Jim was born in Mishawaka Indiana on August 17, 1966, and moved with his family to Shelby in 1972. He graduated from Shelby High School in 1984, and enjoyed math and computer science classes. He played basketball and baseball, where he earned the nickname “Golden Wheels”. He married his former wife Kelly, and became father to Miriya, Ashley and Jaimey.
Jim was passionate about bringing his family together for annual vacations, and always found the best locations and homes for the extended family to gather. He worked with his parents Jim and Fran in the family business, Valley City Metals, which he bought in 2002, continuing the legacy of commitment to quality. Jim was equally committed to the community, and truly cared about making Oceana County vibrant and strong. He was heavily involved in creating opportunities for children through his work with the Optimist Club. Jim was very passionate about economic development and providing opportunities for youth to grow and learn about careers. He also encouraged support for businesses to nurture their valued employees, through his involvement in the Employer Resource Network. Jim was a friend to many, and enjoyed time riding his motorcycle and drinking craft beer with a wide group of friends.
He is survived by his mother Frances, his children Miriya, Ashley and Jaimey, siblings Chris (Scott) Karaptian, Karen (Ron Plante) Plaunt, and Mike (Pam) Frank, and nieces and nephews (Hannah & Ryan Brown, Ari Karaptian, Allan and Jason Plaunt, David and Devon Frank), and his dog Maya.
A Memorial Service will be held at Harris Funeral Home on Friday August 2, 2019. Visitation will be at 3:00 with the service beginning at 4:00. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Community Foundation for Oceana County, PO Box 902, Pentwater, MI 49449.
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