James Harper

September 24, 1931 ~ January 27, 2024 (age 92) 92 Years Old

James Harper Obituary

James Harper, friend to all, passed away peacefully at age 92 on January 27, 2024. Jim was born on September 24, 1931 in Saginaw, Michigan to Harold and Annette Harper. At age 11, he met Nancy Ann Reid, who would become his wife in a marriage that lasted over 70 years. He attended Arthur Hill High School, where he was known as "Spud" and would make lifelong friends, and Michigan State University, to which his allegiance was unflagging, win or lose. Jim was proud of his service to his country in the Korean War, where he served in the Army Security Agency. In Grand Rapids, Jim worked for decades in the group insurance administration field, and later, in "retirement," as the most genial starter at Watermark Country Club. But his greatest talent was making friends. He played many sports but loved basketball, tennis, and softball—especially slow-pitch on his team, the Geriatric Streakers. Jim was also a devoted lover of film and music, a master of the grill, and a wonderful grandfather and great-grandfather. Jim is survived by his wife Nancy, his daughters Jill Marrese (Jim) and Dr. Pam Peszek (Bill), along with his grandchildren: Jeffrey VanDam (Erika), Lauren Marrese (David Tower), Jack Peszek (Kelsey), Laura Peszek Boettger (Robbie), and Dr. Adam Peszek. Jim is also survived by his great-grandchildren Caroline and Alice VanDam and Emma, Allison, and Michael Peszek. His warm presence in our lives will be dearly, dearly missed.

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