Obituary: James Lawrence “JL” Sullivan (1952-2023)

James Lawrence “JL” Sullivan, 71, of Bristol, RI passed away August 3, 2023 in Providence, RI.

He was the husband of Holly M. (Andersen) Sullivan.

Born January 8, 1952 in Newport, he was a son of the late Henry A. Sullivan and Andrine M. (Bruno) Sullivan. Known as “JL” or “Jimmy” he was raised and educated in Newport’s Fifth Ward. JL remained close to his roots and supported the citizens of Newport throughout his life.

A graduate of Bryant and Columbia Universities, an FBI analyst, Newport Police Sgt., 1977 -1998, Newport Grand Security Officer, a substitute grammar school/high school teacher for the Dartmouth, MA school system sums up the formal accomplishments of JL’s life, but he was so much more. JL was an accomplished amateur boxer (26 wins, 5 defeats), an avid bodybuilder which awarded him the title of Mr. Rhode Island at age 37, a fanatical Indianapolis Colts, NY Yankees, and Pittsburgh Pirates fan, cast in the iconic movie “The Warriors” as the leader of the “Electric Eliminators” street gang. He was a lifetime member of the Ancient Order of Hibernians and played in the AOH Pipes and Drums. JL was an original member of the Viking Riders motorcycle club on his classic Triumph. He took to the stage in several dramatic productions of Summer Stock, appeared in several yearly catalogues modeling sports attire, and achieved the rare rank of Eagle Scout. JL spoke fluent German, and remember, “Elvis was born on Jimmy’s birthday”. He had a lifelong belief in loyalty, friendship, the Constitution, America, and God led Jimmy to accomplish “oh so much” into one lifetime. We, who knew him, were enriched dearly.

What a life he lived. JL was uplifted daily by the love and support of his wife, Holly. Jimmy you will be missed.

A Funeral Mass will be held Saturday, August 12, 2023 in St. Augustin’s Church, corner of Carroll Ave. & Harrison Ave, Newport at 10 AM. Burial will be private.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Potter League for Animals, 87 Oliphant Ln, Middletown, RI 02842, or to the Friends of the Bristol Animal Shelter, 11 Broadcommon Rd, Unit 155, Bristol, RI 02809,




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