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Obituary for James A. Whittlesey

James A.(Jim) Whittlesey, age 86, of Boone, died October 27, 2016 at Mercy Medical Center.
Funeral Services will be held at 10:00 a.m. Tuesday, November 1, 2016, at Grace Episcopal Church, 707 8th Street with Rev. Sheryl Hughes-Empke officiating. Burial will follow at the Linwood Park Cemetery with Full Military Honors.
Jim was born in Boone, Iowa on May 14, 1930, the son of Raymond and Ethel (Cadwell) Whittlesey.
He served with the United States Army during the Korean Conflict.
On December 20, 1953, Jim married Alice Martin, also of Boone, in Des Moines, Iowa. Four children were born to this union: Cynthia, Steven, Jeffrey, and Susan.
After trying his hand at farming and a few other fields, Jim settled into a long career selling life insurance and providing estate planning services. He truly believed in “relationship sales”, keeping those relationships with his clients, their children and grandchildren for decades. He eventually took ownership and managed the family farm while maintaining his “town job”. In his younger days, Jim enjoyed square dancing and playing pinochle with Alice, family and friends, fixing everything himself, and planning epic driving vacations where the family made it to a campground every night. He participated as lead actor in Boone Community Theater, where he played with many talented actors in such plays as On Golden Pond, The Odd Couple and Don’t Drink the Water, Jim made sure that everything was a shared learning opportunity during these experiences. He tried to attend every competition or concert his children or grandchildren were involved in, except in situations where he would have to be at two events at once! As he got older, he found more sedentary interests, cheering for the ‘Clones and Hawks (in that order) on TV, playing cribbage, sharing family history, telling jokes, and reading several hours a day. Jim had been involved and supportive of Grace Episcopal Church since his family moved to Boone in 1969. He volunteered as Senior Warden and was active serving on the Bishop’s Committee.
Jim was a member of Boone Masons and the Order of Eastern Star; Boone Chapter. He volunteered in city of Boone committee work. One of these committees developed the city of Boone public workers’ benefits.
Jim is preceded in death by his parents, his brother, Clinton, (and Clint’s wife Frieda), as well as a son-in-law, Bill Vinson.
He is survived by his wife Alice of Boone, two daughters, Cynthia Vinson of Boone (grandchildren Emily in Phoenix, Arizona and Clayton in Iowa City) and Susan (Kenneth) Kanefield of Tucson, Arizona (grandchildren Maxwell in Tucson and Alyssa in Paris, France); and two sons, Steven of San Diego, California and Jeffrey (Lee Ann) of Iowa City (grandchild Cooper in Minneapolis, Minnesota).
Friends may call at the Schroeder Memorial Chapel on Monday, from 3 until 7 p.m., where the family will be present from 5 until 7 p.m. On Tuesday, friends may call from 9 a.m. until the 10 a.m service time at Grace Episcopal Church.
In memory of James, memorials may be directed to the family.


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