James D. Harkness, 78, of Odon, Indiana, went to Heaven surrounded by his family, on Sunday, December 2, 2018 at Jasper, Indiana. He was born in Elkton, Maryland on October 31, 1940 to Benjamin and Lillian (Widdoes) Harkness. He married his loving wife, Ruth A. (Hurst) Harkness on September 2, 1961.
James was a US Air Force Veteran. He was a member of the Loogootee High School Class of 1958 and the Purdue University Class of 1975 and was a lifetime member of the Odon American Legion Post #293. James attended Odon First Christian Church and Buttonwood Bay Church in Sebring, Florida. An avid golfer, he also coached North Daviess High School Golf for 21 years, Little League Baseball and Youth Football for 10 years and worked on the High School Football Chain Gang for 15 years. James retired in 1995 as an Engineering Manager at Crane with 30 years in civil service. He enjoyed spending time with his grandchildren and great-grandchildren, traveling and spending winters in Florida and cheering for all Purdue sports.
Family left to cherish the memory of James is: his wife, Ruth Harkness; two sons, Benjamin (Diana) Harkness II and Gregory Harkness, both of Odon; grandchildren, Chelsea (Bryan) Smith, Drew (Rachel) Harkness, Amanda (Bobby Pierce) Harkness and Taylor (Charlie LaFree) Harkness; great-grandchildren, Piper Smith, Adria Smith and Tinley LaFree; one sister, JoKay Belcher.
James was preceded in death by his parents.
Graveside services are scheduled for 10:00 AM on Thursday, December 6, 2018 at Walnut Hill Cemetery in Odon with Brother Tom Watson officiating. James will be laid to rest following military graveside rites by Odon VFW Post #9627.
Family and friends may call from 4:00 PM until 8:00 PM on Wednesday, December 5, 2018 and from 9:00 AM until 9:45 AM on Thursday, at Meng Family Funeral Home in Odon.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be sent to Ketcham Memorial Center or Parkview Village. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.
All arrangements have been entrusted to Meng Family Funeral Home. Online condolences may be sent to www.mengfuneralhome.com.