James L. Kays, Jr., entered into the celestial lodge above late Saturday night, January 29, 2022, while a patient at Trinity Living Center, Grove City, Pennsylvania, following a sudden illness. He was 98.
James was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania, on November 27, 1923, a son to James L. & Emma V. (Mars) Kays, Sr.
Self was forgotten when he left his home to defend our flag and to help keep our country free in the U.S. Army during World War II. His specialty was an Artillery Mechanic who was assigned to the Headquarters Battery of the 489th Antiaircraft Automatic Weapons Battalion. Sergeant Technician Fourth Grade Kays was deployed to the battles and campaigns of Normandy, Rhineland, Ardennes, Central Europe, and Northern France. His decorations and citations include: Good Conduct Medal, Distinguished Unit Badge, European-African-Middle Eastern Campaign Medal and Ribbon with one Silver Service Star, World War II Victory Medal and Ribbon, and a Rifle Sharpshooter. He was honorably discharged from his duties on November 7, 1945.
Upon his return home, James found employment at Sharon Steel. He worked as a Millwright, Supervisor, and later Superintendent, before retiring after a 35 plus years career.
He was a member of the Grace United Methodist Church, Grove City; 32 Degree Mason of the Ancient Accepted Order of Scottish Rite, New Castle Consistory; Shenango Valley Lodge # 810 F&AM, Hermitage, Pennsylvania; Mystic Order of Veiled Prophets of Enchanted Realm El Bika Grotto, Sharon, Pennsylvania; American Wartime Veterans WWII; United Steel Workers of America; Lifetime Member of the National Rifle Association; and the former VFW Post #8860, Masury, Ohio.
In his spare time, Jim enjoyed boating and water skiing at Conneaut Lake. He was an avid hunter and fisherman, taking many trips to Canada. In addition, he liked working on cars.
He is survived by his daughter, Sandy Kays, of Seminole, Florida; and his nephew, James MacArthur, of Hermitage.
A Private Funeral Service was held to honor Mr. Kays. Both Masonic and Military honors were rendered. He was laid to rest in Hillcrest Memorial Park, Hermitage.
Memorial Contributions may be made to the Grace UMC, 210 S. Broad Street, Grove City, Pennsylvania 16127.
Expressions of sympathy may be left for his family at: www.bricelandfuneralservice.com
Coordination of this tribute for Mr. Kays was presented by Daniel Briceland, Owner & Director of Briceland Funeral Service, LLC, Brookfield, Ohio. (330-509-3135)