JOPLIN, MO —
James R. "Jim" Sterrett passed away peacefully on Nov. 11, 2012, with family at his side after a courageous journey with Alzheimer's. He had been evacuated to Truman Healthcare in Lamar, Mo., from the former Meadows Care Center after the 2011 Joplin tornado.
Jim was born Aug. 7, 1940, in Joplin, to Raymond and Brooksie (Sams) Sterrett. After graduating from Joplin High School in 1958, Jim attended the University of Missouri and received his Bachelor's degree from the University of New Mexico in 1962. He then accepted a commission in the United States Air Force and eventually transferred to the United States Army as a Captain in the Vietnam War. He received several awards, including the Purple Heart during his military career.
Jim married Ellen Spangler in 1963. Upon his return from duty, Jim attended law school at the University of Missouri in Kansas City, taking night classes to attain his Juris Doctorate while supporting his growing family.
Jim's love of adventure and passion for justice led him to a career as a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation. As such, he worked many high profile cases out of Chicago. He retired as the Principal Legal Advisor for the Bureau in Las Vegas in 1992.
An avid reader, Jim also enjoyed the beauty of nature in his favorite activities of flying; sailing and hiking with his family and faithful Labrador, Kayla. His great sense of humor was the highlight of many conversations. Jim attended South Joplin Christian Church.
Jim was preceded in death by his grandparents, Elmer and Josephine Sams and Earl and Gertrude Sterrett; and his father, Raymond Sterrett.
He will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by his mother, Brooksie Sterrett; his sister, Sue Sterrett, Joplin; one son, Michael Sterrett, Plainfield, Ill.; his daughter, Elizabeth Sterrett, Plainfield; grandchildren, Matthew Gaub, Fairbanks, Alaska, Peter Macari and Thomas Macari, Plainfield, and Morgan Sterrett, Schaumburg, Ill.; cousins, David and Joannah Smith, San Marino, Calif., and Stephen and Kathy Smith, Sequim, Wash.; and many friends.
Services are planned for Wednesday at 2 p.m. at Parker Mortuary Chapel. Jill Cameron-Michel, Minister, will officiate. Interment will follow in Ozark Memorial Park Cemetery. Military honors will be conducted at the graveside. The family will receive friends from 7 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at Parker Mortuary.
The family wish to thank the entire staff at Truman Healthcare in Lamar and Hospice Compassus for their loving care, support and respect shown to Jim.
Memorial contributions may be made to ASPCA or to the Alzheimer's Association, both in care of Parker Mortuary.
Online condolences may be made at www.parkermortuary.comhttp://www.parkermortuary.com