Friday, September 4, 2020
11:00 AM EDT
Pavilion of North Park Church
950 4 Mile Road NE
Grand Rapids, MI 49525
At the family's request memorial contributions are to be made to those listed below. Please forward payment directly to the memorial of your choice.
Below is the contact information for a florist recommended by the funeral home.
Life Story / Obituary
A wonderful husband, father, and grandfather, Jim Jett was a devoted family man. An avid gardener and outdoorsman, Jim enjoyed spending time on his Kubota tractor tending to his property which gave him a great source of pride. Gone too soon, he will be deeply missed and leaves behind a warm collection of memories to be cherished by all who knew and loved him.
Despite the war in Korea, by 1952 Americans considered themselves to be prospering. Nearly three out of five families owned a car and more than half of families owned televisions in their homes. Born on October 14th, James Robert was welcomed in the loving arms of James and Jeanne Jett in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Later joined by his younger brother, John, Jim lived a typical childhood of the times.
Jim’s childhood home was on Crescent Street on the northeast side of Grand Rapids. Living right next to his Opa and Oma’s home, he spent a lot of time with them building a lasting bond that he treasured over the years. He fondly remembered them spoiling him with sugary snacks. Active as a youngster, Jim loved to fish as well as play ball with kids from the neighborhood. Normally his dog, Lucky liked to tag along. He attended Plymouth Christian during his elementary years and later attended Union High just after the family had relocated to Charlotte NW on the west side. As an adolescent, Jim was always a hard worker. He enjoyed working out in the fields picking fruit to earn his own spending money. After graduation, Jim took a few courses at the Community College and worked as a manager at the local Burger King. During this time, he met the love of his life, Lynne Zandee, who was a fellow employee. Jim was engaged at the time, yet knew that Lynne was his perfect match! He broke off his engagement, started dating Lynne, and eventually they joined in marriage on Friday, September 13, 1974. Together they welcomed home two wonderful children; Heather and James C.
By the time he was a dad, Jim had decided he needed a better job and began working in the carpentry business. A natural learner, Jim shadowed many projects learning from the best in the business until his work developed into larger projects. He later went into business for himself with Jett Builders, building homes for the rest of his career. As a dad, Jim was easy going and laid back. Throughout the challenges of providing for his family and child rearing years, he kept an even temper. He was very protective of Heather and loved to dance with her! The two of them shared a love of music and Jim took her to see Bon Jovi for her first concert. Jim always made time for the kids and enjoyed watching cartoons with them as well as joking and playing games. As a family, they enjoyed taking long road trips together to San Antonio, Texas and California. By the time his son James was old enough, he would often go to work with Jim on a local job site. Jim loved to teach him how to use the correct tools on building projects. Each and every night the family joined around the family dinner table. Despite their busy schedules, Jim never missed any opportunity to see their special events or sporting activities. He remained close to both Heather and James over the years. Always encouraging and supportive, he was always there for them. When Heather’s home would suffer damage from a hurricane, he would head south to help her with repairs, leaving home even before the hurricane hit. His children never doubted the love he gave them over the years.
Jim enjoyed many simple pleasures in life. He enjoyed riding his motorcycle and skiing in his earlier years and loved his daily walks in recent years. He also savored time hanging out with his special friends and frequenting the local Sportsman’s Club. A favorite time of year was canning fresh vegetables from his garden as well as grilling out! True companions, Jim and Lynne enjoyed dancing together and spending time at the halls on the west side of town. Enjoying the company of others, they made many lasting memories at Polaski weekends together. They both loved the south and Jim built them a winter home in the beautiful state of Mississippi. He also had built them a home on their property in White Cloud in 2003. Whenever they were together, his heart was most content.
Diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2011, Jim battled until he beat it! He never let his illness define him and kept pushing through without ever complaining. He focused on the important things in life including his grandchildren whom he adored. In addition to his love of nature and the outdoors, Jim savored the time he spent with his family. Sadly, his cancer returned and he gave it a tough fight a second time around. He passed away knowing that his family would always know the love he held for each and every one of them. They will surely treasure the joy he shared with them over the years. Known for his warm spirit and gentle ways, Jim leaves behind a wonderful legacy of showing compassion for others and taking great pride in his family. May his memories live on in their hearts forevermore.
James Robert Jett, age 67, a longtime resident of Grand Rapids, passed away at his home in White Cloud on August 27, 2020. Jim is survived by his wife, Lynne; children Heather (Joel) Ellingson, James C. (Stacy) Jett; grandchildren Brennen and Seth Bunn, Grace Ellingson, Jada Riley and James A Jett; brother, John (Diane) Jett; father-in-law Paul Zandee; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Matt (Terri) Zandee, Beth (Jim) Kieling, Brooke (Dennis) Alt, and Todd (Stacy) Zandee; extended family members including Vanda, Rene, Mike and Pat VanValkenburg and many nieces and nephews. The service to remember and celebrate Jim’s life will be held on Friday, September 4, 2020 at 11 AM at the Pavilion of North Park Church, 950 4 Mile Road NE. Friends and family are invited to visit with Jim’s family on Thursday from 6-8 PM at Heritage Life Story Funeral Home, 2120 Lake Michigan Drive NW. For those who wish, memorial contributions to Hospice of Michigan are appreciated. To share a memory, or to sign his guestbook, visit www.heritagelifestory.com