James William "Jim" Shewell
1948 - 2021
Palmer Bush & Jensen Family Funeral Homes - Delta Chapel
6020 W. Saginaw Hwy.
Lansing, MI
James "Jim" William Shewell

Lansing - James "Jim" Shewell, 72, passed away March 3, 2021, after a mighty battle with Parkinson's Disease. He was born in Lansing September 28, 1948, to Howard Shewell and Agnes Shewell, nee Kain. He was a proud graduate of J.W. Sexton High School and received an Associate Degree from Lansing Community College. In his younger years, Jim worked at many jobs in the community. After a long career with the Department of Social Services he retired from the State of Michigan. In retirement, Jim was active and volunteered at the American Red Cross and worked part-time at Peckham Rehabilitation Center. He endeared himself to many people through his off-beat sense of humor. Jim was a doer and was active with many organizations and interests over the years. He volunteered with the Lansing Area AIDS Network to assist local people with AIDS. He organized a music concert fundraiser at Sexton High School to benefit the breast cancer program at Ingham Regional Medical Center. He formed various quartets and enjoyed singing with the Lansing Gay Men's Chorus (now known as LanSingout). To support local women who sing barbershop harmony, he attended many of their Sweet Adelines International events all over the country. Building on Robert Bly's book, Iron John: A Book about Men, Jim participated in support groups for men which offered a safe, supportive environment to share feelings. When more men wanted to participate in groups than space permitted, he even helped start new groups. Jim was always looking for ways to give back to the community. Jim loved time at Lake Michigan where he swam, sunned and strolled on the beach. His family's Pentwater cottage was a special place and he achieved a dream of sharing a home in Saugatuck with his husband, Leith Letcher. Jim and Leith were married September 9, 2017, at their cherished open and affirming Douglas Congregational United Church of Christ. Rev. Salvatore Sapienza officiated. Jim is survived by his husband, Leith Letcher, brother John Shewell (East Jordan) and sisters Linda Donnelly (Chicago, Il.) and Gretchen McKenzie (Lansing), several nieces and nephews, many dear friends and loving pets Ernie, Adeline and Alvin. The family would like to thank Heart to Heart Hospice Care and Prestige Way, Holt, for their professional and compassionate care for Jim. Jim's ashes will be interred at St. Joseph Cemetery, Lansing, and a celebration of Jim's life will take place at a later date when Covid conditions permit. Donations honoring his legacy can be made to the Kirk Gibson Foundation for Parkinson's, 19798 Mack Ave., Grosse Pointe Woods, MI 48236. www.Kirkgibsonfoundation.org. Arrangements are being handled by Palmer, Bush & Jensen Family Funeral Homes, Delta Chapel. The funeral home's website www.palmerbush.com has Jim's obituary and a link to a Guest Book on which to share memories of Jim. To get email updates about Jim Shewell's memorial gathering, enter your email address at the end of the Guest Book section which reads: Subscribe and Get

Published by Lansing State Journal from Mar. 20 to Mar. 28, 2021.
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10 Entries
Jim was a kind gentle man who liked to sing and was a marvelous story teller
Terry Hunt
August 7, 2021
I’ve known Jim for several years and sure enjoyed his company on those times we were able to get together in Saugatuck. I sure will miss him. He was quite a guy!

Carol Bruckman
Carol Bruckman
April 17, 2021
We had such fun growing up as teenagers, as Gretchen was my best friend and I spent a lot of time at their house. Lots of
good-natured teasing and laughs. When my mom found out that he played the piano, she asked if he would come and play for her (on our old beat-up piano) and he did. Just an example of his generous nature. Rest in peace, little bro.
Elizabeth McGinnis
March 30, 2021
I worked with Jim for many years at DSS. Jim was a fun and caring co-worker and a compasionate caseworker to his clients. I am so sorry for your family's loss. A donation has been made in Jim's memory.
Janet Cushman
March 24, 2021
My condolences to Leith and to Jim's family. Leith, I am glad you and Jim had time together to enjoy life. I also enjoyed Jim's participation with LansingSingOut when they performed at my church, First Presbyterian.
Bev Phillips
March 24, 2021
Jim was a special friend to me many years ago when we shared our love of classical piano, spending hours on his piano bench on Berkeley St with his sister, my dear friend Gretchen. How I wish we had not lost touch, he was a gentle soul then and obviously throughout his time here. My condolences to Leith, Gretchen, Linda and John.
Patricia Klein
March 24, 2021
I worked with Jim at Social Services, he was one of the funniest people I ever met. He was a wonderful friend and did a lot for so many people. He will be greatly missed. I loved him so much.
Nadine Luther
March 22, 2021
My condolences and prayers to the family may God continue to watch over each and everyone of you he will truly be missed a great classmate of mine 1966
Pamela Armstrong
March 22, 2021
I grew up with Jim in the old Berkeley neighborhood. ( I was the one with the pet duck named Leroy. We had so much fun. I looked for him once in a while on social media but didn’t find him. Sorry i didn’t catch up with him. Jim, I was glad to know you. ❤
Sherry Babcock Piacenti
March 22, 2021
You will definitely be missed my friend. I will cherish our last visit the rest of my time on this Earth.
Bonnie Rose
March 22, 2021
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