Mills, James Junior; aged 91 years, 4 months and 0 days was born April 10, 1923 in North Star Township, Gratiot County, Michigan to James Clark Mills, Jr. and Sophia Evangeline (Eva) Frankfather. He passed away on Sunday, August 10, 2014 in Ashley, Gratiot County, Michigan. Jay was the sixth child and third son of Jimmie and Eva. His siblings were, Elizabeth Townsend, E. Lenore Brandal, Wayne, William, Jeanette Barton “brother” Francis (Bud) Hanover and three infants. He had no children of his own but his 15 nieces, nephews; and neighbor, Chet considered him a second father. Teaching them to hunt, fish, drive, and most of all how to be silly. Jay attended Cook-Levering Country School, North Star School, and Ithaca High School. Before joining the United States Army
695th Airborne Battery, he worked at Willow Run air Defense Plant in Ypsilanti, Michigan. Jay served in the European Theater for three years. Seeing action in Sicily, Italy, Germany, and France; receiving service metals, including, 7 bronze stars
. After returning home to North Star, he became a repairman for the local phone company. There he met one of the telephone operators, a young war widow named Margaret Jean Fisher Brown. They were married in August 1947 in Ohio. After 26 years of marriage Maggie passed away on April 19, 1973. Jay had worked 30 years at the Fisher Body Plant in Lansing, Michigan when he retired in 1984 and also farmed his land in Washington Township. On August 3, 1974 in Niles, Michigan he married Ruth L. Lombard Sticksel. She passed away on November 8, 2000. Deer hunting “up north” for years and then at his cabin in the woods was his passion. By his side was his dog; be it Deanie, Molly, Becky, Nikki, or Tippy. He loved his two horses; Bronc and April. Funeral Services will be held at Smith Family Funeral Homes, Ithaca, MI on Wednesday, August 13, 2014 at 11 a.m. Visitation will be on Tuesday, August 12, 2014 from 2 to 8 p.m. with family present from 2 to 4 and 6 to 8 p.m. and for one hour prior to the service. Burial will be in the Ithaca Cemetery. In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to the Gratiot County Commission on Aging, or Whitetails Forever. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. Online condolences can be sent to www.smithfamilyfuneralhomes.com
The Family is being served by Smith Family Funeral Homes, Ithaca, MI.