James R. Kay, 69, of Decatur, MI., formerly of Benton Harbor, died unexpectedly November 12, 2020 at his home.
Jim was born January 16, 1951, to Robert F. and Virginia (Null) Kay in Benton Harbor, Mi. He attended Benton Harbor schools, graduating from Benton Harbor High School in 1969. While attending BHHS, Jim was a member of the golf team and the Benton Harbor Band. He was particularly proud of his participation in marching band becoming drum major his senior year. After graduating from BHHS, Jim attended Michigan State University.
He returned to Benton Harbor in the early 70’s to work with his father in real estate and was a broker and appraiser. He also officiated several sports primarily baseball and football. On November 14, 1981 Jim married Deborah Fitch in Benton Harbor. They remained in Benton Harbor until moving to Decatur in 1997 so Jim could pursue farming. That remained his vocation until his retirement in 2013. He will always be remembered as an avid golfer, a stalwart Spartans fan and a lover of nature, particularly bird watching and gardening.
Jim was preceded in death by his mother Virginia Kay in December 1975 and his father Robert Kay in February 1997.
Jim is survived by his wife Deborah of Decatur, his sister Patricia Kay of E. Lansing, MI., his nephew Jamie (Chesshire) Rodgers of Lansing, MI, his niece Jennifer Flores of Lansing, MI, great nephew Dillon Rodgers of E. Lansing, MI and great nieces Desaree’ Flores of Lansing, MI and Brianna Flores of Lansing, MI. Additional survivors are sister-in-law Wendy (Tom) Myers of Battle Creek, MI, Wendy’s son Antonio (Bethany) Barroso of Marshall, MI, brother-in-law Mark Fitch of Gilbert, AZ, Mark’s daughter’s family Jessica (Jeremy) Hackworth and children Vincent, Matthew and Isaac Hackworth of Marshall MI.
Cremation has taken place. A memorial celebration will be scheduled for a future date as circumstances allow. Remembrance donations can be made to your local Humane Society.
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