Veteran was always there to lend an ear
Describing him as a devoted father, husband, grandfather and great-grandfather, Jim Stoner said that his father was the kind of man who commanded respect without being too intimidating.
“Just caring, a good listener. He could talk to anybody about anything,” he said of his father, James B. Stoner.
James B. Stoner, 86, of Scottdale, died Sunday June 10, 2018, at home.
Born Feb. 29, 1932, in Scottdale, he was the son of Wilber and Iona D. Stoner.
He graduated from Scottdale High School in 1950 and went on to work as a draftsman and estimator for Duraloy Blaw-Knox in Scottdale. He also served as a private first class in the Army during the Korean War.
He was an active member of Christ United Methodist Church in Scottdale, as well as a member of the Married Couples Class and a volunteer at spaghetti dinners.
Although he didn't have a title or an official role, Stoner said his father was at the church every week and brought his children.
“Every time they were doing fundraisers or benefits, he would be there,” he said.
He did have a title among his grandchildren, who called him “Pap,” Stoner said.
“He's a great guy, great dad; all of the kids, all of our friends could talk to him,” he said.
A lifelong athlete who enjoyed friendly competition with his siblings, Mr. Stoner played softball, golf and basketball. He was a member of the United Methodist State Championship basketball team.
He shared his love of sports with his children, Stoner said, teaching them to swim during family vacations to the beach. He would throw the kids in the water and say, “swim to me,” Stoner said of the sink-or-swim approach.
Mr. Stoner is survived by his wife, Patricia Stoner, who he met on a double date at a dance club 60 years ago; four children, Teri Butchko of Dunbar, Lori Campbell of Norvelt, Jim Stoner of Hanover and Julie Denski of Irwin; seven grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.
Arrangements are being handled by Robert B. Ferguson Funeral Home. Funeral services will be held at 11 a.m. Wednesday in the funeral home, 105 Spring St., Scottdale, with the Rev. Kathy Barnhart officiating. Graveside committal services and interment will follow in Scottdale Cemetery, with full military honors.
Memorial contributions can be made to the Special Olympics at www.specialolympics.org.