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James Hurd

James William Hurd

Monday, June 29th, 1936 - Thursday, October 24th, 2019
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James William Hurd was born on a farm near Keswick, Iowa on June 29th, 1936. He was the fourth child (of eight) of Roy Andrew Hurd and Nellie Lorraine Bell Hurd. He is survived by two sisters, Janet Prickett of Bangor, Maine, and Karen Huggins of Marshall, Missouri.

Jim met Roberta Kaye Fouch on a blind date when both were seventeen, and they married on December 30, 1955. Jim was in the military, and they lived first in Texas and then in La Rochelle, France. When he was discharged they moved to the small town of Gilbert, Iowa, where they lived for twenty-five years. Jim quickly involved himself in many of the town’s activities, serving on the city council, fire safety at the local school, as well as church programs. He was passionate about fire safety, taught classes for volunteer fire departments all over the state, and was a well-known figure at the annual Iowa State Fire Safety School, and served as President of the Governors Iowa Safety Council. He held the position of fire chief in Gilbert for twenty-three years. In his last twenty-five years of employment he was an engineering manager first of Employers Mutual and then Aetna Insurance Company.

In 1995 Jim and Roberta went on a three-week mission trip to Hungary. It was a life-changing experience for Jim; returning home to secular employment seemed meaningless. That fall, the head of International Messengers encouraged Jim to consider becoming the director of the Hungarian IM team. In December 1996 the couple moved to Budapest. They returned to the United States two years later, settling in Erie, Pennsylvania to assist their youngest son and his wife with their twin boys who have health issues.

In 2014 they relocated to Tucson, Arizona, where both their daughters live. By then, Jim was experiencing the effects of Parkinson’s disease and struggled with other health problems. His earthly journey ended on October 24, 2019.

Jim is survived by four children, Kevin James (Nancy) of Iowa City, IA, Lori Renee Bair of Marana, AZ, Michelle Kaye Pemberton (John), also of Marana, AZ, and David William (Lavina) of Warsaw, OH. They have thirteen grandchildren, Katie Darling, Jacob Hurd, Audra Yoder, Chelsea Nunziato, Tyler, Justin, and Thomas Pemberton, John, Wesley, Caleb, and Joshua Hurd, and Jeremy and Ryan Weaver. Jim is also survived by his eleven great grandchildren, Rowan, Crosby, and Briggson Darling, Damien Nunziato, Peter and Henry Yoder, and Lincoln, Declan, Jamison, Elle, and Holden Pemberton.
Services will be held on Saturday, November 2, 2019 at 3 pm at North Valley Baptist Church, 700 E Palisades Rd, Oro Valley, AZ 85737. In lieu of flowers please make donations to North Valley Baptist Church.
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Service Details

  • Service

    Saturday, November 2nd, 2019 | 3:00pm
    Saturday, November 2nd, 2019 3:00pm
    Sun & Shield Baptist Church
    8811 W Avra Valley Rd, Marana, AZ 85653
    MARANA, AZ 85653
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    In lieu of flowers please make donations to North Valley Baptist Church.
  • Reception

    North Valley Baptist Church
    700 E Palisades Rd
    Oro Valley, AZ 85737
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email
    Following the service


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Private Condolence
Jane Hansen sent flowers to the family of James William Hurd.
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Jane Hansen

Posted at 09:03am
Jim was a wonderful husband, father, and grandfather . He will be greatly missed. The Hansen Family
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520-201-1130 Dodge Chapel: 1050 N. Dodge Blvd. | Tucson, AZ 85716 | Phone: 520-201-1130
Avalon Chapel: 8090 N. Northern Ave. | Oro Valley, AZ 85704 | Phone: 520-201-1141