James “Jim” Blakeman
Published 7:44 am Tuesday, May 9, 2023
James “Jim” Blakeman
May 5, 1920 – May 3, 2023
Lexington, Kentucky – James Herman Blakeman, days from 103 years young, passed away peacefully at his home while surrounded by his loving family on Wednesday, May 3, 2023. Jim was born on May 5, 1920, in Jessamine County, Kentucky to the late James Mack Blakeman and Emma Joplin (Riddle) Blakeman.
Jim wed Ruby Moore on June 17, 1950, and together they celebrated 70 years of marriage until her passing in 2020. He graduated from Jessamine County High School and undertook coursework at the University of Maryland, University of Kentucky and University of Oklahoma. Jim worked as a civil servant for the U.S. Army then served in the Army Air Corps during WWII from 1942 to 1945 as a Technician 4th Grade intercepting and translating Japanese code in the Pacific Theater. He returned to civil service working for the U.S. Government Department of the Army as Clerk, Supply Officer, Liaison Officer, Supply Systems Analyst, Supervisory Supply Systems Analyst, then as Branch Chief, Supply Division, retiring in 1981 as a GS-14. He engaged in investment ventures during his retirement. Jim and Ruby and their family traveled extensively, living overseas in Japan for 7 years. From there, he made many multi-month trips to over 20 countries to help improve their logistics. Jim frequently traveled to Vietnam to help support the war effort, being present in Saigon during the Tet Offensive. He was commissioned a Kentucky Colonel in 1980. Jim was a loyal member of Lafayette Church of the Nazarene for 50 years, serving as Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Sunday School Superintendent, Chairman of the Board of Christian Life, Sunday School teacher, Director of Christian Service Training, Chairman of the Building and Planning Committee, bus ministry member, frequent soloist and choir member. Jim and Ruby enjoyed many lengthy visits to Hawaii visiting their eldest. His sale of family land including Fort Jones augmented the National Park Service’s Camp Nelson National Monument. Jim was a devoted husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather who enjoyed gardening, hiking, swimming, horseback riding, singing, playing checkers and traveling. He is now strolling along streets of gold with the love of his life in his heavenly home!
Left to cherish his memory are his 5 devoted children, Linda (Phillip) Greene, Stephen (Audrey) Blakeman, David Blakeman, Paul (Jana) Blakeman, and Janice Pinheiro; 11 grandchildren, Galadriel Greene (Julien) Bonnel, Lorelei Greene (Billy) Fray, Natalie Greene (Will) Shafer, Crystal Greene (Jay) Riley, Vanessa Greene (Ben) Miller, Heather Blakeman (Jeremy) Michael, Gregory Blakeman, Andrew (Amber) Blakeman, Matthew Blakeman, Helena Pinheiro and Cristina Pinheiro; and 15 great-grandchildren, Jeremie and Justin Bonnel, Avery and Lily Fray, Addison and Emery Shafer, Daniel and Haylee Riley, Sabrina, Caleb and Alayna Miller, Blakely, Blaise, Malachi and Maeven Michael. A host of nieces and nephews knew him as “Zermie.” In addition to his wife Ruby and his parents, Jim was preceded in death by his sister Grace Lee Winaker, his sister Katharine Mae Blakeman, his sister and brother-in-law Mattie Logan (Bill) Walters, his sister and brother-in-law Alice Marie (Roland) Brooks, his sister and brother-in-law Corine (Ullie) Herren and his brother and sister-in-law John Robert (Gisela) Blakeman.
Visitation will begin at 10:00am and last until service time at 11:00am on Friday, May 12th at Milward – Man O’War located at 1509 Trent Boulevard, Lexington, KY 40515, with Rev. David W. Dorn and Rev. Jared K. Henry presiding over services. Interment at Camp Nelson National Cemetery will follow at 1:30pm with full military honors.
Paying homage to his legacy and in lieu of flowers, Jim’s family would like memorial contributions directed to Lafayette Church of the Nazarene’s Missions Offering, 420 Picadome Park, Lexington, KY 40503, or via their website www.lafnaz.org or directly online via https://secure.subsplash.com/
To share a remembrance of Jim or offer condolences to his family, please visit www.milwardfuneral.com.