James Paul Landis was born on March 2, 1937, in Carlisle, Pennsylvania, to Paul and Annie Bishop Landis.
Jim passed away early on New Year’s Eve, 2017.
He was the oldest, and the ringleader, of three boys. His brothers, Robert “Bobby” and Raymond “Skip,” were a constant source of energy, amazement and pranks to family and friends. Age did not change that.
Jim spent 17 years serving in the Pennsylvania Army National Guard. Jim was an avid hunter, counting bear, deer, moose and elk among his many trophies. He was a horseman, and could walk anybody ragged in the wilderness. He has hunting buddies all over the U.S. and Canada.
Jim married Donna Marie Casner in 1965. They raised four children, Jeffery Steven, Jamie Lynn, Jason Lee and Karissa Ann. After Jeff died at 19 years old in a Jeep accident, Jim’s dear childhood friend, Ronnie Shover, helped him realize God was not to blame. God has always been with the Landis family. Jim grew closer to the Lord and lived a life that proved it. He was active in the churches he attended. After moving to Montana in 1989, Jim served as deacon and elder in the Northridge Heights Church of God and the Hillside Church, both in the Flathead Valley.
Jim was a helping hand and a second dad to many. After Donna passed away in 2003, he grieved much. Then, in 2005, he picked up his tools and flew to Florida to help reconstruction after Hurricaine Wilma. Also in 2005, Jim and a contingent from the Flathead went to Chile, near Valparaiso, to build a church. During this time, he struggled to cope with Parkinson’s disease. Yet the workers and the countrymen of Chile were amazed at his strength and stamina. Jim never knew the word “quit.”
On March 31, 2007, Jim married a friend from church, Pamela Ann Stewart. They enjoyed a couple of Alaskan cruises, several hunting trips, and mostly each other. The Landis family accepted Pam with open arms, which is such a blessing.
As his Parkinson’s progressed, he traveled to Spokane where he had a deep brain stimulator (DBS) surgery in 2009. Though DBS does not stop the disease, it eliminated the tremors that kept him from tinkering in his shop and garage. DBS surgery is now performed in the Flathead Valley, and Jim was willing to advocate the procedure to anyone who called with questions.
He was preceded in death by his father Paul, his son Jeff, his stepfather Cree, his wife Donna, his mother Annie, his brother Bobby, and nephew Doug.
In addition to his three surviving children, Jim has a grandson and wife, Jacob and Tatyana Landis whose three children Maverick, Stetson and Wren were a source of joy and entertainment to him. Jim’s other grandson and wife Damian Hurst and Serina Van Curan have three boys, Zachary, John and Matthew, who also love to hunt. His granddaughter Andrea just graduated from high school in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Jim Landis lived a full-filled and giving life.
There will be a memorial service to remember his life at 1 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 6, at the Hillside Church, 5685 Highway 93 south of Whitefish.
Jim was not a big fan of cut flowers. Any donations can be made to the Hillside Church.