MISSION, TEXAS/SWEA CITY, IA – James Harvey Preston, 85, of Mission, TX, passed away February 1, 2017 at Pax Villa Hospice, McAllen, TX, following hospitalization since December 24, 2016.
Memorial services will be at 2 pm Saturday, February 4, 2017, at First United Methodist Church in Mission, TX with Pastor Bill Duke officiating. Summertime memorial and burial services in Swea City, IA are pending.
Jim was born on June 28, 1931, at home to Joseph Wesley and Pearl Q. (Keeney) Preston. He was raised on the family farm south and west of Swea City with seven older sisters and one younger brother and graduated from Swea City High School in 1949. He was a United States Army Korean War Veteran. When he came home he began farming his own farm south and east of Swea City,
On June 25, 1955, Jim married the love of his life, Marilyn Jane Mino, at the First Methodist Church, in Swea City, that became their church family. Jim was an ambitious farmer and built an innovative cattle feeding operation in the late 1960’s. He served as a Kossuth County Cattlemen Director for many years.
Spending good times with extended family was always important to Jim. There were many get-togethers, trips around the country to visit relatives, along with numerous camping and fishing trips with family and friends. In 1970 Jim purchased a ski boat which lead to much water skiing and fishing (Canada, SD, AK). Jim enjoyed playing cards and games–with ping pong being especially competitive! Jim also enjoyed hunting and shared this love with his sons.
The couple began traveling around the South each winter in 1984 and moved from Swea City to Mission in 1999. They kept very active with square dancing, bridge, volunteering at church and Walk to Emmaus. Summers were spent traveling around the Midwest visiting family and friends, but he especially enjoyed spending time at the Missouri farm—fishing the ponds, enjoying the beauty and peacefulness. Jim learned woodworking and carving wood in high school. He began perfecting his carving in the last ten years and enjoyed presenting each family member with a special piece.
Jim’s final days were spent reminiscing about all these things including how much he loved his Lord, wife, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. He is survived by his wife of 61 years, four children: Twila (Gary) DeRocher, Merrill, IA; Dallas, Spickard, MO; Leo McMinnville, OR; Debbie (John) Nece, Wichita, KS; 10 grandchildren/4 great-grandchildren: Tara (Lee) Bird, Avery & Makenna; Heather (Eric) Miller Josiah & Tobias; Dalton Preston, Summer Preston, Jessica Preston, Joseph Preston, Nathan (Megan) Nece, Brandon Nece, Nicholas Nece, Brianna Nece; sisters Phyllis Griffith, Apple Valley, CA; Janyce Kelly, Armstrong, IA; brother-in law Marvin Boever, Estherville, IA; sisters-in-law Gwen (Preston) Dodrill, Frisco, TX, Violet Opdahl, Lewiston, ID, Evelyn (Gail) Petersen, Exira, IA and many dear nieces and nephews.
Preceded in death by his parents, his father-in-law Leonard (Doris & Helen); sisters Pauline (Maynard) Jensen, Eloise (Roger) Linde; Wilma (Al) Nelson; Miriam (Kenny) Anderson; Nina Boever; brother Thomas; brothers-in-law Keith Griffith; John Kelly; Duane Opdahl; Donald (Pat) Mino; sister-in-law Maribel Mino.
In lieu of flowers please send donations to the Valley Emmaus Community at 40 Ocelot Trail Laguna Vista, TX 78578 in memory of Jim Preston.