James Harlan King July 29, 1927 – September 26, 2011
James Harlan King, son of Willard Benjamin and Edna Mae (Jones) King, was born July 29, 1927 on a farm near Indianola, Iowa. He graduated from Indianola high school in 1944. James worked the harvests for two years with his brother, Dale. He was then drafted into the U.S. Army in 1950. On March 15, 1951, he was united in marriage to Myrtle Lee Bodeman at the Avon Christian Church near Carlisle, Iowa. James was stationed in Korea.
Following his discharge, James lived in Des Moines, Iowa. It was during this time that he began his career in the propane business. While in Des Moines, their first child, Gary, was born. They soon moved to Carlisle where Ross, Randy and Lori would be born into the family. James, Myrtle Lee and the children would move as the propane companies advanced him and needed him. He became a plant manager and excelled at prospering and managing the business that he was assigned to. The family lived in Keokuk and Mount Ayr before James was assigned to Baldwin, Michigan where they lived from 1980 to 1989 when he retired, making Mount Ayr their permanent home.
James enjoyed watching tractor and horse pulls. He had and enjoyed a large garden. He loved being outdoors. During the summer you would see him sitting on the front porch waving to every car that drove by. James was a great cook; a skill he tapped upon while in the U.S. Army. Family was important to James and he was a loving husband, dad and grandpa. He had a gift of conversation and ‘never knew a stranger.’ He will be remembered as a jokester and kidder; witty and good humored.
James passed away at his home in Mount Ayr on September 26, 2011 surrounded by family. He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Myrtle Lee; daughter, Lori Jean King; grandson, Adam Lee King; sisters, Lois Fetters and Alberta Florence Thomas, and brothers Earl King and Dale King.
Those left to cherish his memory include his children, Gary Harlan King and wife Donna of Grant City, Missouri, Michael Ross King and wife Gerry of Mount Ayr, Iowa, Randy Lee King and wife Janine of Shawnee, Kansas and Sarah Marie Mathany and husband Wes of Mount Ayr, Iowa; grandchildren, David, Lori and Daniel King, Michael, Jamie, Ryan and Joey King, Brien Johnson and Carson and Brayden Mathany; five great-grandchildren and two more soon to be born; sisters, Vera Cope of Carlisle, Iowa and Nadine Olson and husband Richard of Wisconsin; sisters-in-law, Jeane King of Indianola, Iowa and Betty King of Milo, Iowa; nieces; nephews, and other relatives and friends.
Memorials are to the Mount Ayr Assembly of God Church. Services were conducted at Watson-Armstrong Funeral Home in Mount Ayr on Saturday, October 1, 2011, with Rev. Doug Rohrer officiating. Musicians included Nancy Sackett, Mary Davenport and Margaret Bickers.
Casket bearers included David King, Daniel King, Ryan King, Joey King, Jamie King and Brien Johnson.
Honorary pallbearers were Michael King and Lori Beinor.
Military rites were by Ringgold Post #172 and Iowa Honor Guard Unit.
James was laid at rest in the Rose Hill Cemetery in Mount Ayr.