Jimmy John Carnes was born on June 8, 2001, in an ambulance, as his mother was being rushed to the Baptist Memorial Hospital in Oxford, Mississippi. His mother, Arnette, died during childbirth, leaving Jimmy's father, Jack, brokenhearted and alone with his newborn son.
Jack and Jimmy moved in with Jack's parents, and they all lived together in a small farmhouse in the country. The farming family didn’t have a lot of money, but they never complained.
Jack Carnes never remarried and never got over the death of Jimmy’s mother. He lived contentedly, if not joyfully, with his parents until Jack was killed in a farm accident during the summer of 2010. Jimmy was devastated, but with the help of his grandparents and his church, he worked through the grief. He took comfort in the knowledge that his mom and dad were in heaven, and he would see them again.
In school, Jimmy made a lot of friends because of his wonderful disposition. He always had a smile on his face and a good word to everyone he met. In high school, he had several girlfriends, but none that he was interested in enough to spend a lot of time with.
Jimmy had big plans for his future and wanted to go to college, but he knew that his family wouldn’t be able to help him financially. He had been a competent student in high school but didn't have the grades to win an academic scholarship, so he knew he would have to pay his own way through college.
One thing he could do well was work on cars and fix them up. On the farm, he had become a master mechanic, working on all the farm equipment and the family automobiles, so after he graduated from high school, he applied for positions at nearby car repair shops.
He wasn't able to find a permanent mechanic job, but he did get part-time work at some of the local service stations. He filled in when full-time mechanics went on vacation and helped out when there was more work than the regular staff could handle. He also did private car repair jobs for friends and neighbors, working in an old garage on the farm that his grandparents let him use.
He saved every penny he could in his college fund, but it wasn't enough, so he took a job at a convenience store in town. He was able to work the late shift at the Kangaroo Express, leaving his days free for his mechanic work.
On January 10, Jimmy was working at the Kangaroo Express when he and a customer discovered a young woman's body in a restroom at the store.