Created on Wednesday, 18 September 2013 Written by THE BELLEFONTAINE EXAMINER STAFF
James Wesley “Big Jim” Wickliff, 81, of Russells Point, passed away Monday, Sept. 16, 2013, at St. Rita’s Medical Center, Lima.
He was born in Pataskala on Feb. 8, 1932, a son of the late Wesley and Ethel Sheetz Wickliff. He also was preceded in death by his brothers and sisters-in-law, Ross and Minnie Nelson, Gene and Alice Nelson, Jack Nelson and Wally Wickliff; a sister, Patricia Wickliff; and is now in heaven with his beloved granddaughter, Heidi Moriarty.
He is survived by two daughters, Patti (Lynn) Fichtner of Columbus and Pam (Brett Pettiford) Wickliff of Shawnee, Lima; three grandchildren, Travis (Stephanie) Moriarty of Westerville, Sarah Norviel of Upper Arlington and Dale Norviel of Fayettville, Ark.; five great-grandchildren, Haley Moriarty, Gabe Moriarty, Max Montoney, Luke Doughty Moriarty and Hannah Doughty Moriarty; two sisters-in-law, Peg Nelson and Ody Wickliff, both of Bellefontaine; two cousins, Kathy Sheetz Wilson and Robert Sheetz; and numerous nieces and nephews.
Jim walked down the aisle three times in his life, first to the mother of his children, Wanda Booth Simpson. Next to Linda Voss and last to his very special friend, Pat Smalley. His circle of friendship with these ladies and their families remained until his passing.
A Korean War veteran, Jim shared a great love for this country. He never knew a stranger and if you were from Indian Lake, you surely knew Big Jim. His presence was contagious. If you were having a bad day there was no one better than Jimmy to turn that around. These are a few things he loved: His family and friends, The Ohio State Buckeyes, the Cleveland Browns, a well-manicured lawn, onions, black pepper, a good cigar and a cold rum and Coke.
Jim sold life insurance for almost 50 years. He also was the former owner of The Shamrock, in the mid-1960s, and in 1977, he and good friend John Shultz took over the popular Dell’s Nite Club. He also was a Washington Township Trustee for 12 years.
He was a lifelong member of the AMVETS, American Legion and Elks.
Jim’s request was to be cremated. Visitation is from 10 to 11 a.m. Saturday at Shoffstall Funeral Home, Lakeview, followed by a memorial service. In honor of his love of the Buckeyes, the family asks visitors to come dressed to support his favorite team. A gathering to watch the OSU game in his memory follows at the Lakeview AMVETS.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Lakeview AMVETS.
Express condolences at shoffstallfuneralhome.com.