TUSCON, Arizona -- James Lewis "Jim" Madden was born Sept. 27, 1926, to Lily Elizabeth Wood Madden and Francis Joseph Madden in their home north of Indianola, Nebraska. Jim Madden died on Feb. 3, 2011, at the Tucson Medical Center in Tucson, Arizona, at the age of 84.
Jim spent a happy childhood on the family farm north of Indianola and was baptized and confirmed at St. Catherine's Catholic Church in Indianola. He attended grade school at Frontier County District No. 27, a one-room schoolhouse about three miles north of their home. He and his siblings walked or sometimes rode a horse to and from school.
As World War II began, Jim enlisted in the U.S. Army in 1944 and served a tour of duty in Italy, with his last stint in Puerto Rico.
After the end of World War II, he received an honorable discharge from the Army Air Force at Davis Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson, Arizona. It was there that Jim met and married, Delores "Dee" Baker, in 1950. Jim was very fond of motorcycles when he was younger and when they took their honeymoon to Nebraska, they rode their motorcycle.
They moved from Tucson to Lincoln, Nebraska, and while there were married at St. Teresa's Catholic Church in 1954 after Delores joined the Catholic Church. After living in Lincoln for a short time, they moved back to Tucson, Arizona. They later moved to Chula Vista, California, and lived there until retirement in 1986 when they moved to Grand Island, Nebraska. They lived in Grand Island until Delores' health conditions initiated a move back to the dry conditions offered in Sierra Vista, Arizona.
Jim and Dee were avid Chevy enthusiasts and worked countless hours restoring a 1932 Chevrolet in the early 80s. After moving to Grand Island Jim spent two years working on his pet project, a 1940 Harley Davidson motorcycle, which he completely restored. They had no children, but Jim's motorcycles and Corvettes filled the gap.
Jim's friends and family were very important to him, and he treasured them beyond words. After Delores' death in 2001, Jim spent early and late summers in Grand Island where he made daily rounds to friends and family.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Delores R. Madden; sisters, Alice Walker and Arline Sorensen; brothers-in-law, Delbert Walker, Emert Farr and Lloyd Sorensen; father-in-law, Leroy Baker; and mother-in-law, Opal Baker.
Left to embrace memories of him are his sisters, Denelda Marie Madden Schermerhorn and husband, Bernard of LaMesa, California, and Loretta Gail Madden Farr and husband, Emert of Kearney, Nebraska; and brother, William Joseph Madden and wife, Ann of Alpine, California; in addition to numerous nieces and nephews.
Visitation is Friday, 5-7 p.m., at Apfel Funeral Home at 1123 West Second Street in Grand Island.
Funeral services for Jim Madden are Saturday, 1:30 p.m., at St. Catherine's Catholic Church in Indianola with Father Thomas McGuire officiating. Pallbearers are: Tom Farr (nephew), Mike Cacy (nephew), Matthew Farr (great nephew), Michael Cacy (great nephew), Nicole Farr Leathers (great niece) and Tara Farr (great niece). Pallbearers (in absentia): Bill Ohlson (nephew), Ty Weidner (great nephew) and Donnie Baker (brother-in-law).
Burial is at Saint Catherine's Cemetery in Indianola.