I started at the Iowa City VA in 2017, working in the Canteen. After my previous career fell apart, I had 2 kids, a bachelors degree, and I was making sandwiches for a living. I only encountered Jim a few times there, but he always encouraged me to apply for other jobs and move up at the hospital. After a year I had moved on to another position. Jim happened to flag one of my notes, and he remembered my name from my Canteen name tag. He took the time to call me and congratulate me on the promotion, and he told me to keep moving up. It was a small gesture that meant the world to me. 5 years later I'm still at the VA, and still moving up. I'm very thankful that Jim had the kindness in his heart to be so encouraging and thoughtful to a person he didn't know that was making his lunch. He was a wonderful person, and he inspires me to bring that kindness to the people I meet.
The St John’s were our next door neighbors on Windsor Drive. I will always remember Jim as such a nice guy. I’m so sorry for your loss.Gail Neppel ODonnell
I am so sorry. This was just shared with me today. Jim was always a force in the community and in the workplace. He spoke his mind and held me and our union accountable. I am so sad that his time in retirement was cut short. Jim gave to the world much more than he took and very few can have that said of them.
So very sorry to hear about the loss of Jim. He was a kind beautiful soul and the world will be less lovely without him.
Sending love & prayers to all of you. Jimmy was a wonderul cousin and loving soul for all who knew him. He had a gift for making each person feel special and important. I was happy to connect again and to meet you, Doug. I remember Jim saying that Mary was going ahead to prepare a room for him--I'm sorry he needed that room so soon. But I also picture all of the love waiting to greet him, especially from our grandmother, Julia. I know his love remains with those he treasured.
Karen Mitchell Levesque
Jim was a caring soul. I so loved his run for city council and his continued involvement in the community. He just cared. A much needed trait in this world. May we celebrate his life well.
So sad to hear this. I always enjoyed talking to Jim and about our common interests. I'm so sorry for Doug and the family and friends left behind.
Dear Doug and family - Where do I begin being Jim's office mate at the VA for approximately four years and to hear the news. I thought Jim was calling to tell me his home improvements were done and when are we going to grill out but instead it was Jim's brother calling to give me the sad news. I am so blessed I was able to visit Jim after my military deployment and he was down in the basement painting and telling me how much he was enjoying retirement. Doug, I am sure Jim told you many times the thermostat in our office was constantly going up and down. I laugh I was always cold and Jim was always hot and that poor thermostat didn't know what to think. I have this blanket he gave me, since I was always so cold, which will remind me of all the good office times. Jim was so easy to talk to and extremely kind hearted; we had so many wonderful conversations. He enjoyed talking about his coin collection and all his dogs; I couldn't keep up with which dog was who. I know you have so many cherished memories to hold onto. My heart and prayers are with you Doug, the dogs too, and all family - Isaiah 41:10
Blessings | Tamra Brus
To Doug and the extended St John family, my sincere condolences to you all. Though as a cousin of his I did not know Jim well as I only remember him in family special events in my childhood. However, I have fond memories of roars of laughter with his presence in these events he attended adding levity where he could. I heard stories of his generosity in helping our Grandmother with reading and tasks. Along with his infectious smile, I am sure he continued to be a joy to be around and would be sorely missed and I’m sorry for your loss.
Doug, We are saddened to learn of Jim's passing. He was such a kind and gentle soul. We will never forget both of you being so kind to Tyler. You are in our prayers. May you find comfort.
Doug we are sorry to hear of your losing Jim. Jim was such a kind person and always made time for those in need. He will be greatly missed. He had such a great love for you. Hugs to you and Jim's family.
Julie and Scott Stroback
Doug and family, I am so sad to hear Jim is gone. He was such a delightful person to be around. I had hoped to be around him more and get to see him do amazing things to make the world (or at least Iowa) a little better. I think he made every person he encountered a little better, and he will be greatly missed.
No words can match the pain all who loved Jim are experiencing now. This is so very sad to lose a loved one period, let alone
in this manner. I had the honor of meeting Jim at the St. John's house when I was a student @ Iowa. My heart goes out to Denny and Pam and to everyone who loved Jim. I still consider it an honor to call Denny and Pam a friend. Love to all. We grieve together.
So sorry for your loss Doug and family. Always enjoyed visiting with Jim and having a good laugh.
I am very saddened to hear this news. Jim was the sweetest and most patient person at work. I enjoyed our talks and will keep his family in my thoughts and prayers! Rest peacefully Jim!
To Jim’s family,
I’m deeply sorry for your loss and send my sympathies. Jim was my best friend during our middle, high school and early college years. I’ll never forget his bigger than life personality and his ability to talk to anybody, anywhere, anytime, including the time he took me to a Teddy Kennedy presidential rally in Waterloo, Iowa and as Kennedy was coming off the stage surrounded by secrete service agents, Jim stepped right up and was the first to shake Kennedy’s hand congratulating him on a great speech, getting a thank-you acknowledgement from Teddy Kennedy himself. I know that was a special moment for Jim as he had told me often he had been inspired by the Kennedy’s political careers.
Jim introduced me to biking in 9th grade and we rode our 10 speed Schwinn Varsity bicycles hundreds of miles across Iowa City to tropical fish stores and the Amana Colonies. He was a great tropical fish hobbyist in those days and got me started breeding tropical fish and selling them back to the stores. We went on many adventures and had outrageously fun times including trips around Iowa, to Colorado after high school graduation with Bert, and Arizona and Mexico over spring break. We grew up together and I will always remember Jim as a brother that helped me get through those early years.
God bless you all
My deepest sympathy To Jim's family. I believe I worked with John and possibly Jim many years ago at the Eagle Supermarket in Wardway Plaza.
To Jim's family and friends:
I am sorry for your loss.
Jim was a friend of mine in high school.
We had some really good times.
Jim was a good guy.
Doug and family,
Jim and I went to High School together and were involved in planning a Prom one year. He did a wonderful job and made sure it was an inclusive and great event for all as you might expect. He always had so much empathy for his fellow classmates back then. My friend Kurt and I took him camping in the Amana Colonies one weekend. We rode our bicycles out highway 6 to get there and back. His overloaded bike with all his supplies and his waking up to a herd of cattle surrounding our campsite may have permanently made him swear off camping though. Sorry if we caused that. Other memories include riding around in my 1952 Buick during High School, Oh what a time!
Sending you all love and grace to absorb this loss. I ams sure he left you with great memories which you will always cherish.
Doug, i'm sorry for your loss. I didn't know jim very well, but from the times I talked to him while i was working on your basement I could tell what a kind, caring, and friendly person he was. The world will be a little bit darker without people like him in it.
I am so sorry for your loss Doug. Cherish all the memories you two built together. My condolences to you and your families.
Doug : This is just so unbelievable we are so sorry. Jim was a hell of a guy and enjoyed his conversations and love seeing you guys at Thanksgiving. I know there are no words to ease your pain but know that we are all here for you and hope that knowing we are all praying that god will comfort you in the days to come. We love you both very much Love Aunt Tubby
Doug and family,
I am so sorry for your loss. Jim was and incredibly and and lovely man. He also gave me guidance on retirement and to do the things that bring joy to the soul. Prayers for you Doug.
Doug and Jim’s family- you Have my deepest condolences. Jim was a special friend to my son Duke. He was so kind and was always there when Duke needed him. He was the kind of person who will not be forgotten. You’re all in my prayers.
Doug and family
I’m so sorry to see this . What a super nice guy . Sending my sincere condolences and prayers to all
I am so sorry Doug, my heart is breaking for you all! Jim was such a sweet man with a smile that brightened the room!
Doug and Family, I am so sorry to hear of your loss. I cannot imagine how painful this must be. My heart and prayers are with you during this difficult time, a prayer for peace that passes understanding.
Doug, my heart is broken for you today. Jim and I met when I started at the VA. He saw a rainbow flag pin on my lanyard when I went to train with him on coding and he asked me if I was an ally. I told him I was married to a lady. Then his guard dropped and he used a full flamboyant queen dialect to welcome me to the VA. He told me from day one to let him know if I were ever harassed or bullied at work for being gay and he would help me handle it immediately. He invited me up to his office periodically to listen to a queer song or poem he found and sometimes print out the lyrics so we could read them together while we listened, then gave me a copy to take home. I have "the Joker" lyrics by Brandi Carlile hanging in my office from our first hang out like this. We would listen and he would knit and close his eyes and love every second of the song. He was a bright spot at work for me. He also gave me lots of unsolicited advice about saving for retirement and the importance of setting aside money to have many adventures when you have all the time in the world after you leave the workforce. I was so excited for him to go out and live his best life that he had planned and saved so much for. It breaks my heart to know that this time was cut so short. Doug, please be sure to go on all the adventures you planned together. I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. He was a really beautiful man and made me feel so welcome here at the VA.
Doug, I am so sorry. Jim was a unique and wonderful human being. Hugs to you and the rest of Jim’s family.
I am saddened to hear of Jim's passing. He was such a compassionate and kind man. I always enjoyed talking with him. And he was so loving especially about Doug. We have lost a treasure. Loving, kind and supportive thoughts to Doug and the family left behind.
Doug, you already know this but Jim was such a kind and loving person. He was always eager to assist in any way he could. Your loss is unimaginable and the heartbreak is immeasurable. Hugs to you and the family.
Doug- I am heartbroken to hear this. Jim was such a gentle and compassionate person. He was one of the first people at the VA to welcome me when I first started and was detailed to the vaccine clinic. He told me you were outside waiting for him in the car. He shared with me how hard the pandemic has been. We cried together and parted with a hug. I talked to him again before he retired and he was looking forward to retirement. I am so sorry for your loss of such a beautiful human.
Doug- I am just at a loss for words. I enjoyed every minute I ever spent with the two of you, Jim made every event twice as fun, just by bringing his smile and laughter. Can't imagine your heartbreak right now. Hugs to you and the family.