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James "Jim"'s Story

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James "Jim" Billman, of Joplin, Mo., passed away peacefully, surrounded by family, on December 21, 2017. He was 81.
Jim was born on August 10, 1936, in Tolono, Ill., to his parents, Frank and Anna Billman. Jim attended Unity High School in Tolono and was proud to be a Unity Rocket.
He married the love of his life, Sandy Portwood, on October 11, 1958. She remains at the family home in Joplin.
Jim started his business career in 1956 as a ticket agent for Ozark Airlines. Jim became Ozark's resident manager at the Joplin airport in 1971 and retired from the airline in 1991.
Jim was a great family man, neighbor, and friend to so many. Jim enjoyed bowling and was a member of the Joplin Bowling Association. Jim was also proud to be a lifetime member of the Webb City Elks Lodge serving many roles including exalted ruler three times.
Jim is survived by Sandy, his wife of 59 years; sons, Daniel (Pam) Billman, of Murfreesboro, Tenn.; Jeffrey (Sally) Billman, of Conway, Ark.; David (Anne) Billman, of Overland Park, Kan.; and daughter, Amy (Pete) Box, of Joplin. Additional survivors include nine grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren. Jim is also survived by one sister, Patricia Stunkard, and one brother, Edward Billman; many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents and three siblings, JoAnn, Bill, and Mary.
Jim was cremated and per his request no services will be held.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Webb City Elks Lodge 861 Veterans Fund, PO Box 705, Webb City, MO, 64870.
Published on December 26, 2017
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