James L. Sellmyer, better known as Big Jim, 88, of Wenona, passed away peacefully June 13, 2020 at Heritage Manor in Minonk with his loving wife of 66 years at his side.
Mass of Christian burial will be 11:00 AM Friday in St. Mary’s Church in Wenona with the Franciscan Friars offiating. Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery in Wenona with full military services. Visitation will be from 9:00-10:30 AM at the Hurst Funeral Home in Wenona.
Jim was born on November 6, 1931 at St. James Hospital in Pontiac to Leonard and Frances (Healy) Sellmyer. He was raised on the family farm in Saunemin and graduated from Saunemin High School. Jim served in the Korean War and was a proud veteran. Upon return, he married the love of his life, Doris Wolf on May 8, 1954 at St. Paul’s Church in Odell. The young couple moved to Wenona and farmed until retiring a few years ago.
He was a member of a St. Mary’s Church where he served as a Eucharistic Minister, reader, and Dominican Associate. He also served on the Wenona School Board which included the position of School Board President. Jim was a Wenona Fire Protection Trustee where he served as treasurer. Jim had many interests and hobbies throughout his life which always involved agriculture, his devout attention to family and his daughters, as well as learning how to fly which included a pilot’s license. Jim was well known for his ability to talk to anyone, no matter where he was, and he never met a stranger.
Jim is survived by his wife, Laura “Do” and his three daughters, Mary (Rick) Reichel from Washington, Ann (Scott) Spangler from Elk Grove Village, and Kay (Glenn) Barry from Cortez, FL. Jim was a proud grandparent of Josh Reichel, Megan (Sam) Gannon, Laura Reichel, Anna Reichel, Andrew, Joey, and Nicki Spangler.
He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Jerome, and his sister Mary (Paul) Rittenhouse.
The Sellmyer family would like to thank the Heritage Manor in Minonk for their excellent care during the past two and a half years. Memorials can be made to the Wenona American Legion or Saint Mary’s Church in Wenona.
Online condolences may be viewed and remembrances shared at www.hurstfuneralhomes.com.
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