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James M. Tisdale

Cedar Rapids

James M. Tisdale, 93, died after a long illness at Mercy Hallmar in Cedar Rapids on Feb. 21, 2019. A memorial service will be held March 7, at 2 p.m. at Echo Hill Presbyterian Church followed by a visitation with family and friends in Fellowship Hall.
Jim was born in Cedar Rapids, to Owen and Eleanor (Clements) Tisdale. He spent his early life in Cedar Rapids until his father was transferred to Marshalltown in 1940, where Jim attended high school. Upon graduation in 1943, he enlisted in the U.S. Army and served until 1946. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in journalism in 1950 from Coe College, Cedar Rapids.
On Aug. 28, 1949, Jim married Jeanne Olson. He worked for Iowa Electric Co. in DeWitt, Atlantic and Clarinda until the mid-60s, when he joined the fundraising staff at Coe College. In the mid-70s, he joined St. Luke's Hospital as director of fundraising and public relations. Later, he founded his own company, James M. Tisdale and Associates, serving smaller hospitals in the Midwest, retiring in 1987. Jim and Jeanne had four children. Jeanne passed away from cancer on Jan. 28, 1990.
As a youth, Jim was one of the original members of the Cub Scouts at First Congregational Church and a member of the Boy Scouts. He was assistant director of Camp Waubeek while attending Coe College, and later headed the Scouts' Kee-Bu-Aw Indian Dancers. He served as Scoutmaster for troops in DeWitt, Atlantic and Clarinda.
Music was an integral part of Jim's life. He sang in youth church choirs, and continued choir and solo activities as an adult.
Jim was a deacon and trustee for Kenwood Park Presbyterian Church. He was one of the original members and past president of the Cedar Rapids Literary Club, a member of Bowman Woods Gourmet Club and served on the Board of Trustees for Geneva Towers.
Jim served Lions International in many capacities throughout his adult life including secretary-treasurer for his local club. In 1994, he was awarded Lion of the Year, later receiving the Warren Coleman Honorary Award from the Lions Clubs of Iowa.
On Dec. 22, 1991, Jim married Anneliese (Heider) Gardner at Kenwood Park Presbyterian Church. He and Anneliese enjoyed traveling the United States, Europe and South America together.
As a kind, generous, principled, civic-minded man, Jim loved being involved with his family, friends and community. In keeping with his values, Jim's body was donated to the University of Iowa's Deeded Body Program, to aid research.
Jim is survived by his wife, Anneliese; children, Gary (Linda) Tisdale, Terri (Patrick) Ferguson, Kirt (Gail) Tisdale, Kent (Peg) Tisdale, Larry (Myong) Gardner, Linda (Gary) Tisdale and Lorena Potter; 17 grandchildren; 24 great-grandchildren; and sister-in-law, Beverly Tisdale.
He was preceded in death by his parents; wife, Jeanne; and brother, John Tisdale.
In lieu of flowers, please make contributions in memory of James Tisdale to: The Dementia Society of America, www.DementiaSociety.org/donate or Lions Club International Foundation, www.lionsclub.org/en/donate.
Please share your support and memories with Jim's family on his tribute wall at www.stewartbaxter.com under obituaries.
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