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Posted: Tuesday, February 28, 2017 11:47 am


James Robert Latimer was born January 30, 1923, the fifth of seven children to Dr. B.E. and Auley Ann Pearman Latimer at the Latimer home in Hartville, Missouri.  After losing his dad at the age of ten and his mother at seventeen he and his two younger brothers, Gene and Floyd moved to his grandparent’s farm in the Little Creek community.  He finished high school with the help of his grandmother, brother Jap, sister Grace, and Bertie Shaver and started his journey of farming and business.

James graduated Hartville High School in 1941, he then spent two years at the University of Missouri in Columbia while staying with Grace and her family.  He volunteered for the Marines and spent three years ending up in Honolulu, Hawaii as a payroll clerk.  Upon returning to the states he married his sweetheart Virginia O’Dell and they had seventy-one years together.  While living on the Latimer farm he and Virginia raised and milked registered Jerseys.  After some back problems and an offer from Marsh Carter to come to work at the bank, he began his thirty-two-year career as a loan officer of Wright County Bank, later Wright County Mercantile Bank of Hartville.  James, Virginia, and children Larue, and Janet moved to the home on Loring Road where they have resided for over sixty years.

A young couple, Darrell and Janette Hudson took over milking duties and were great help and great friends for the seventeen years they were there plus all the years that remained in their lives.  Son, Larue and his wife Pam still live on and take care of the Latimer farm, which is now a Century Farm.  Daughter Janet married Earl Carriger and had two daughters, Sherry and Gina, thus giving them two granddaughters and after their marriages, four great-grandchildren.  

Those gone before James were his grand-parents, his father and mother, Dr. B.E. and Auley Latimer, infant brother and sister Ralph and Ruth Latimer, brothers, Jasper Dowe “Jap” Latimer and his wife Loraine, Benjamin Eugene Latimer and his wife Mildred, Floyd Ezra Latimer and his wife Pat, and a sister, Grace Smith and her husband Dwight.

Survivors include his wife of seventy-one years, Virginia, one son, Larue and his wife Pam, one daughter, Janet Carriger and her husband Earl.  Two granddaughters, Sherry Dryer and husband Daron, Gina Freeman and her husband Jim, one great- grandson, Mitch Freeman and his wife Carin, three great-granddaughters, Sydne Dryer, Madison Robinson and her husband Dylan, Julia Dryer, step grandchildren, David and Melony Dennis and Marianne Taylor, step great-grandchildren, McKenzie, Cameron and John, numerous nieces and nephews, relatives, and friends.

James and Virginia were active members of the Hartville United Methodist Church for nearly sixty years.  He was also active in the Lions Club, VFW, and other community activities.  

He and Virginia traveled to Australia, Hawaii, and toured all over the United States after his retirement from the bank.  They loved sharing their garden and helping neighbors in the area.  James’ hunting and fishing skills were shared by many throughout Wright County.

His love of music and dancing was always demonstrated to the helpers who cared for him at home as well as the Hartville Care Center nurses and residents.  He will be missed by many but now will be dancing in heaven with his Lord.

Services were Sunday, February 26, 2017, 2:00 p.m. in the First Freewill Baptist Church, Hartville, Missouri with Dr. Dick Wakefield officiating.

Music was by Madison Robinson and Janice Erisman.

Musical selections were: “It is Well”, “What a Day That Will Be”.

Burial was in Steele Memorial Cemetery, Hartville, Missouri.

Escorts were Dennis Hudson, Randy Hudson, Ronnie Hudson, Jimmy Freeman, Jackie Arnall, Jody Arnall, Rodney O’Dell, Daron Dryer.

Escorts: Darrell Cope, Bill Coday, Garnall Cogdil, Karmon Cogdil, Faron Cogdil, Klaron Cogdil, Ray Carr, Bob O’Dell, Darrell Russell, Tom Blackwell, Linzie Arnold, Laron Arnold,  Charles Blackwell, Dr. David Smith.

Services were under the direction of Holman-Howe Funeral Home, Hartville, Missouri.

Online condolences may be left at holmanhowe hartville.com.

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