James “Jim” Sawyer, lifelong resident of Kent, OH, passed away on Sunday, March 5, 2023. Jim was the fifth of nine children born to Ed and Beth Sawyer on August 15, 1931.
Jim was a graduate of the Kent City School System beginning at St. Patrick’s School and ultimately attaining a Master’s in Education from Kent State University after being drafted and serving in the United States Army.
Jim’s professional career began as a custodian for the Kent City Schools while also attending Kent State. Upon finishing his degree, Jim became a Math & Science teacher at Central School. Later, Jim taught Mathematics at Davey Junior High School where he stayed for nearly 40 years. From Room 306, “Mr. Sawyer” taught generations of students. In addition to teaching, Jim was the head football coach for the Junior High teams, as well as coaching basketball and baseball at the Jr. and Sr. High School. Jim also taught Driver’s Education and Math in the Summer.
Jim was a lifelong member of St. Patrick’s Parish. His selflessness was shared by his involvement as a Eucharistic minister, lector, CCD instructor, and a Pre-Cana mentor. Jim received the Pius X award for his commitment to religious education.
Jim’s commitment to his community was evident through his volunteer support of the Ala-Teen, Insight, and Community Intervention programs. He also served as an official inspector for the Soap Box Derby. Jim served 25 years as a member of the Kent Education Association, including a term as president.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, his wife Diana, many of his siblings and in-laws. Jim leaves his legacy in his son Tim, of Uniontown, OH, his daughters and sons-in-law, Jill and Larry Reeder of Hilliard, OH, Laurel and Scott Maurer of Marblehead, OH, Kathleen “Kitty” Sawyer and Jim Schell of Norton, OH, his grandchildren John and Kristin (Reeder) Ryan of Powell, OH, Christopher Reeder of Columbus, OH, great grandson Trevor Ryan and his great granddaughter whose face is known only to Great Grandpa Jim. Jim is also survived by his brother, Donald Sawyer of Berea, OH, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Calling hours will be held at Bissler and Sons Funeral Home, 628 W. Main St. Kent, OH 44240 on Friday, March 10, 2023 from 6:00PM-8:00PM and Saturday, March 11, 2023 from 9:30AM-10:30AM. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. Patrick Catholic Church, 313 N. Depeyster St. Kent, OH 44240 on, Saturday March 11, 2023 at 11:00AM with the Rev. Fr. Richard Pentello as Celebrant. Burial will follow at Standing Rock Cemetery.
Donations may be made to: Our Lady of Victory Charities, 780 Ridge Rd. Lackawanna, NY 14218-1682.
Services in care of Bissler and Sons Funeral Home and Crematory.
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