Skip to content

James Christian Overholtzer December 30, 1924 – August 1, 2011

   James Christian Overholtzer, 86 years old, was born December 30, 1924 in Leon, Iowa and passed peacefully at home August 1, 2011 in Mount Ayr, Iowa. He was the only son of Christian Ellis and Margaret Gale Overholtzer of Grand River, Iowa. He graduated with the Grand River high school class of 1942. Jim served in the U.S. Navy during WWII. Upon returning from service, he was employed by John Deere in Waterloo and married Mary Elizabeth (Betty) Long.
    They raised their family of three children in Grand River, where Jim served as postmaster for over 30 years. His wife, Betty, preceded him in death in August of 1981.
    In August of 1985, Jim married Lila Richards of Kellerton in a service held in Hawaii. They have lived in Ringgold county these past 26 years.
    Jim was an active member of Topaz Masonic Lodge since 1946 and a member of American Legion Post #172. His friends and family knew him as an avid cribbage player and dancer who enjoyed few things more than a good laugh, often at his own expense. He had a nearly endless number of friends from spending years as the friendly local postmaster, more years as the go-fer for Lilac’s Gift Shop, and a lifetime of taking part in community and family organizations and events — Masonic Lodge, American Legion, Lions Club, various churches, coffee ‘clubs,’ dance and card clubs (Grand River pitch shack) and, most recently, congregate meals. He loved people and they returned the favor. His appreciation was always shown by a hearty, ‘Thank you!’
    He is preceded in death by his parents; wife, Betty Overholtzer; two sisters, Yvonne Bengston and Emma (Don) Adams; daughter, Janice C. Overholtzer; nephew, Kenneth Brown, and brothers-in-law,  Marvin and Junior Reynolds and Paul Davis.
    He is survived by wife Lila Mae Overholtzer of Mount Ayr, Iowa; sons Chris (Paula) and Dan (SanWa) Overholtzer, both of Washington; niece Mary Brown of Des Moines, Iowa; 11 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; sisters-in-law Olive Davis, Mickey (Paul) Drake, Betty (Cecil) Davenport of Mount Ayr, Iowa and Lou (Steve) Church of Lee’s Summit, Missouri, as well as many nieces, nephews and dear friends.
    Memorials are to the First Christian Church and the American Legion Ringgold Post #172. Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr was in charge of the arrangements.
    Services were conducted at the First Christian Church in Mount Ayr on Wednesday, August 3, 2011, with Rev. Chris Conklin officiating. Musicians included Ginny Eighmy, Kathy Rinehart and Rev. Terry Roberts.
    Casket bearers were Joe Jackson, Richard Schwalbe, Marvin Lesan, Kelly Richards, Mike Shields, Justin Akers and John Klein.
    Honorary pallbearers were LBanks Wilson, Leroy Blessman, Jerry Marler, Duane Glick, Duane Brammer, Gerold Willey, Charles Richards, Kenny Johnson, Duane Poore and Bob Burchett.
    Military rites were by American Legion Ringgold Post #172 and the Iowa Honor Guard Unit.
    Jim was laid at rest in the Grand River Cemetery in Grand River.

Leave a Comment