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James VanOrsdel

Obituary of James VanOrsdel

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James “Jim” VanOrsdel, husband, father, and grandfather, died on April 27, 2024, from progressively worsening health complications following a debilitating ICU visit in early 2023. Jim was born in Youngstown, Ohio on June 22, 1946 to Thayer Randolph and Emma Yuhasz VanOrsdel. He graduated from Boardman High School in 1964, where he ran competitive track at the state level. He then graduated from Youngstown State University with a BS in chemical engineering in 1969. He married Carol Ann Thompson, who he met at Boardman High School, on August 30, 1969, and they spent their 53 years of marriage making homes in Gilbertsville, PA, North Canton, OH, Albemarle, NC and finally in Murfreesboro, TN. Jim spent his entire 45 year career designing and engineering tires, working for BF Goodrich, Michelin, and finally retiring from Bridgestone. He had an unparalleled work ethic and loved to travel. He enjoyed telling stories about going to the North Shore of Alaska to work on tires on oil rigs while seeing polar bears outside his window, visiting Japan and eating interesting foods, and traveling to Florida to design tires for space shuttles. But the best benefit from his career was the giant inner tubes Jim would bring home from the factories in the summers for his kids to float around on lakes while on vacation! At the peak of his health, he enjoyed golf, racquetball, boating and fishing when he could make time. He also loved a competitive game of bridge or UNO and was part of a wine-tasting club for many years. He took over the family genealogical records (which, on the Fitz Randolph/VanOrsdel side, dates all the way back earlier than the 1600s), and loved working in the yard and his small garden. A devoted husband, he was Carol’s tireless caregiver – day and night - after she suffered a spinal cord injury in the years before COVID. Jim is survived by his wife Carol of Murfreesboro, TN, son Brian VanOrsdel (Jessie McMillin) of Naperville, IL, daughter Julie VanOrsdel Daves of Niwot, CO, and granddaughters Emma Daves (London, ON), Claire Daves (Apex, NC), and Abby Daves (Boulder, CO). Jim’s sister Janet (Bob) Davis lives in Grand Rapids, MI; and a sister-in-law Jane (Jack) Hewes lives in Rochester, NY. Our family would like to extend a special heartfelt appreciation to nurse Angela Marable of Nashville Care Managers helping us navigate many complex challenges, ParkView Meadows of Murfreesboro where mom and dad lived before his hospital stay (and where mom still resides), and Community Care of Rutherford County where dad spent his final months. We are grateful for this community and the many people who visited and helped us during these last years. A celebration of life service will be held at First United Methodist Church on Saturday May 18th at 1:30PM, located at 265 Thompson Lane, Murfreesboro, TN 37129. Reverand Krislyn Durham will be officiating.
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Memorial Celebration

1:30 pm - 2:30 pm
Saturday, May 18, 2024
First United Methodist Church
265 W. Thompson Lane
Murfreesboro, Tennessee, United States
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James VanOrsdel

In Loving Memory

James VanOrsdel

1946 - 2024

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