He was born on March 3, 1929 in Minonk, IL a son of John Carl and Margaret Milstead Ford. He married Mary C. Petri on January 12, 1957 in Minonk, IL. She survives.
Also surviving are one daughter, Sarah (Bill) Hakes of Ballwin, MO; one son, John (Polly) Ford of Minonk, IL; five grandchildren, Elizabeth, Daniel, and Sean Hakes all of Ballwin, MO; Graham and Kailey Ford both of Minonk, IL; and one brother, John Stephen (Darlene) Ford of Grand Haven, MI.
He was preceded in death by his parents, one son, James and one sister, Norma Jean.
An Army veteran, James served his country during WWII. He was a member of the Minonk American Legion, VFW, and the NRA.
James was a lifetime farmer in the Minonk area. He was a representative for special education as well as serving 9 years on the Minonk-Dana-Rutland School Board and 15 years with the Minonk Fire Protection District.
Funeral services will be held at 11:00 am on Friday, August 2, 2013 at the Ruestman-Harris Funeral Home in Minonk. Visitation will be held on Thursday evening from 5-7 pm at the funeral home. Burial will be in the Minonk Township Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, Community Cancer Center in Normal, IL; Heritage Health Care in Minonk, or the Minonk United Methodist Church. Online condolences may be sent to the family at www.ruestmanharrisfuneralhome.com.
The family would like to give a special thanks to the staff at Heritage Health Care and Dr. Sriratana for the exceptional care given to James.