James Dilmus “Dink” Clayton, oldest son of James Richard Clayton and Vera Belle Hughes Clayton, of Smyrna, “slid into Glory and touched Home Plate” on Friday, July 5, 2013. He was born on June 26, 1930, in Winder and by 1935 the family had moved to Douglasville, where he attended public school. A gifted athlete and semi-pro baseball player, he learned the art of baseball and to be an excellent hitter from his next door neighbor, Johnny Hill, former hitting instructor for the Atlanta Crackers’ Baseball team. He got his nickname for his ability to “dink” baseball hits through the infield and to steal bases to the consternation of the opposing teams. Dink moved to Smyrna in 1946, where he met the love of his life, Betty Jo Garnto Clayton, who predeceased him on November 9, 2012. Dink never met a stranger. His gregarious outlook and love of meeting people and taking care of his family would be lifelong attributes. He was a coach for Smyrna Little League and Pony League and eventually became a National Director of Pony League Baseball in the 1970’s and early 1980’s. His favorite vacation spot was at Daytona Beach, Florida, where he loved the “Blue Waters” and later “Magic Carpet” motels. He retired from Black and Decker, Inc., after 32 years of service and began a second career in sales with his son, Terry, at Sporting Goods Warehouse, Inc., in Smyrna. He leaves to cherish his memory, a son, James Terrell “Terry” Clayton, daughter-in-law, Deborah Chupp Clayton, of Smyrna, his daughter, Beverly Denise Clayton, and her husband, Anthony, “Tony” Frazier of Smyrna, three grandchildren, Caroline Clayton Enright and her husband, Matthew T. Enright, of Atlanta, Cathleen M. Clayton, of Atlanta, and Adrian T. Stephens, of Smyrna, several nieces and nephews in Illinois, Texas, and Virginia, cousins, and numerous friends. A funeral service will be held 2 p.m. Wednesday in the chapel of Carmichael Funeral Home in Smyrna with Dr. Steve Kimmel officiating. Burial will follow in Georgia Memorial Park Cemetery in Marietta. The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. Tuesday at the funeral home.