James Michael Walker, 70, of Decatur, IL, passed away on Friday, November 15, 2013, in his home with his loving family by his side.
James was born October 30, 1943, in Decatur, IL, the son of James Warren and Virginia (Vest) Walker. He married Nancy Ohl on July 21, 1970, in Decatur, IL. He was a member of St. John’s Lutheran Church in Decatur. He loved his Lord and his family who always gave him constant joy.
James taught instrumental music for 37 years in the Decatur Public Schools, 34 of those years at Mound Middle School, and received the Teacher of Excellence award twice. He was a member of the Decatur Municipal Band since 1960, and performed with his own trio and quartet as well as with Dixieland and ballroom dance groups. James was Past Concertmaster, president, and librarian. He performed for three governors of the State of Illinois.
James received a Bachelor of Music Education degree from Millikin University in 1965 and was inducted into the American Guild of Musical Artists. He received his Masters of Educational Administration from Sangamon State University. He studied with Benard Portnoy of the NBC and Cleveland Symphonies.
Surviving are his wife Nancy of Decatur, IL; daughters Chelsea (Terry) Phillips of Morton, IL and Janet (Tom) Flesch of Marion, IL; four grandchildren Andrew Phillips, Caleb Flesch, Katie Phillips, and Cameron Flesch; brother Steve (Carolyn) Walker of Camp Hill, PA; and sister Kathy (Richard) Crum of Decatur, IL; and numerous nieces and nephews.
James was preceded in death by his parents.
The family wishes to thank DMH Hospice for the loving care given to Jim during his journey.
Credit: Family members