James Willard Gardner
1953 - 2020
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James Willard Gardner

Ogden - James Willard Gardner, 66, passed away unexpectedly on April 22, 2020. He was born in Des Moines, Iowa, on October 3rd, 1953, the son of Willard and Roberta Gardner.

Jim graduated from Lincoln High School in 1971. Upon graduation he went to work for John Deere at the Ankeny Plant where he was a welder. After two years he joined the Airforce where he served as a Fire Protection Specialist in England and F.E. Warren Air Force Base in Cheyanne, Wyoming. After leaving the army he returned to John Deere where he worked many years until retirement.

He loved trains and after retirement worked at the Boone & Scenic Valley Railroad, where worked his way up to engineer. Jim enjoyed meeting the people, working on the trains, the track and performing various maintenance jobs. Friends remember he enjoyed telling stories.

Jim was a very talented man, he loved music, and he could play by ear. He played the guitar, keyboard, and drums. His many hobbies included; fishing, scuba diving, motorcycle riding, BBQing, and judging BBQ Contests. He loved photography and developing his own photographs. Jim was an avid ham radio operator for many years, and in the last couple of years, he took up chain saw carving.

Jim is survived by his loving mother Roberta and sister, Linda Gardner-Goos. He was preceded in death by his father Willard.

Due to public gatherings being limited, there will not be any services for Jim at this time.




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Published in the Des Moines Register from Jun. 29 to Jun. 30, 2020.
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