First Responders 04

James "Tank" Waters

November 25, 1979 ~ April 7, 2020 (age 40)


TRYON -- Tryon Fire Chief James "Tank" Waters, 40, of Tryon passed away, Tuesday afternoon, April 7, 2020.

A native and lifelong resident of Polk County, he was the son of Ricky Dean Waters of Tryon and Janet Cowan Chapman (Adrian) of Tryon. Chief Waters was a graduate of Polk County High School Class of 1998. He began his fire service career in 1995 serving as a junior fireman with Tryon Fire Department. Following graduation, he went on to earn his B.L.E.T. in 2001and began working for Columbus Police Department, Polk County Sheriff’s Office and Tryon Police Department. Through the years, he served at Tryon Fire Department, Columbus Fire Department, Saluda Fire Department and Henderson County Rescue Squad.

Chief Waters became a career firefighter with Tryon Fire Department in 2012, became Assistant Chief in 2014 and Chief in 2019. Since then, he completed North Carolina School of Government Municipal and County Administration Course.

Surviving in addition to his parents is his loving wife of nine years, Tracy Ravan Waters; one daughter, Yancy Leah Pace (Quinton Price); one grandson, Keaton Daniel Price; one sister, Samantha Jackson of Tryon; one brother, Justin Jackson of Tryon; maternal grandparents, James and Patricia Cowan of Tryon.

Due to the restrictions from COVID-19, there will be a drive thru viewing Monday, April 13, 2020 form 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at the Tryon Fire Department.

A funeral will be held for the family at 7:00 p.m., Monday at the Tryon Fire Department with Reverend Ryan Howard officiating and will be live streamed through the McFarland Funeral Chapel website.

Memorials may be made to Tracy Waters Special Account, c/o State Employees Credit Union, P.O. Box 26748, Raleigh, NC 27611-6748 or visit your local credit union branch.

To send flowers to James' family, please visit our floral store.


April 13, 2020

4:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Tryon Fire Department

Funeral Service
April 13, 2020

7:00 PM
Tryon Fire Department

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