James Willard Payne, 79, of O’Fallon, born June 12, 1935, in Success, Ark., passed away Wednesday, May 27, at Memorial Hospital in Belleville.
Mr. Payne served in the U.S. Air Force, specializing in aviation electronics, for four years after graduating from high school. He had worked as a mechanical design engineer within the access control industry for many years. In his younger years, Jim enjoyed sailing and flying. He enjoyed his hummingbirds, was an avid vegetable gardener, a talented pen-and-pencil artist and a loving husband, father and grandfather. He attended, with his wife Pat, the events sponsored by the Senior Citizens’ Club of O’Fallon.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Hazel Waltz and Roscoe Payne; his dear mother-in-law, Louise Bevirt; and his brother-in-law and friend (who introduced him to his future wife), Blaine Bevirt.
Surviving are his beloved wife of 54 years, Patricia Ann, nee Bevirt, Payne, of O’Fallon; children, Lori (John) Emmerich of Freeburg, Scott (Kimberly) Payne of N. Charleston, S.C., Dina Payne of Rochester, Ill., and Chris (Ron) Gass of Shiloh; his three grandchildren, Leah Emmerich and Jim and Hannah Gass; his sister, Wilma Tritely of Georgia; and his half-sister, Gail Oliver of White City, Kan.
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Memorial donations are suggested to the O’Fallon Community Food Pantry. Please sign the guestbook at www.wfh-ofallon.com.
Visitation will be from noon-2 p.m. Monday, June 1, at Wolfersberger Funeral Home, 102 W. Washington St., O’Fallon.
Funeral services will be at 2 p.m. Monday, June 1, at the funeral home, with Mr. John Emmerich officiating.
Burial with military honors will follow at Mount Calvary Catholic Cemetery in Shiloh.
Wolfersberger Funeral Home will handle the arrangements.