James Alexander Kiser, Jr. of Chapin, SC, passed away on December 4th, 2023 at the age of 92 from the effects of Alzheimer's disease. Jim was a choir member in the tenor section and active leader in several churches, including Saint Mark’s Lutheran, Charlotte, NC and Redeemer Lutheran, Columbia, SC. He and wife Joan were active in the Arpad Darazs Singers and Dutch Fork Choral Society.
Jim was born on July 24th, 1931 in Mooresboro, NC. He graduated from Balls Creek High School in 1949, received his bachelor’s degree in English and social studies from Lenoir Rhyne College in 1952, and his master’s degree in education from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill in 1953. Jim did further graduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley from 1966 to 1968.
During his college days at Lenoir Rhyne, Jim met Joan Petrea. They were both very active in campus activities, including A Cappella Choir and Playmakers. At some point along the way, Jim and Joan decided to spend the rest of their lives together, and they married on August 24th, 1952.
Jim served in the US Army at SHAPE Headquarters in Paris from 1954-1956. After returning to the US, he taught and provided counseling in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg schools. He led the Student Services program at Central Piedmont Community College from its founding in 1963 until 1973.
From 1973 until his retirement in 1997, Jim directed student services and counseling programs for the South Carolina technical college system. He held several leadership roles in the American School Counselors Association, as well as in state associations in North and South Carolina. Jim was a strong advocate for educational benefits for veterans.
Jim was the son of the late James A. Kiser, Sr. and Norma Lee Gurganus Kiser of Charlotte, NC. He was married for 68 years to the late Joan Petrea Kiser of Chapin, SC. Survivors include son Mark Kiser and daughter-in-law Nickie Brown of Knoxville, TN; son Ross Kiser of Alexandria, VA; brother Dan Kiser of Atlanta, GA; grandson Matthew Kiser of Knoxville, TN; and granddaughter Linnet Kiser of Brandon, FL.
Our deepest thanks go to Jim’s caretakers at the Heritage at Lowman and Lutheran Hospice in Chapin, SC, and to friends and caregivers from Redeemer Lutheran and the community.
A graveside service will be held at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 100 St. John's Church Road in Concord, NC on Friday, March 1st at 2 pm. Jim’s memorial service will be at Redeemer Lutheran Church at 525 St. Andrews Road in Columbia on Saturday, March 2nd at 2 pm. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, Lutheran Hospice, Lenoir-Rhyne University A Cappella Choir, Redeemer Lutheran Church, or Saint John's Lutheran Church Heritage Center.
Memories may be shared at www.dunbarfunerals.com.