James W. REIL

July 5, 1935April 1, 2019

James W. Reil, 83, of Margate, FL, formerly of Drums, PA, kind and beloved father, grandfather, great-grandfather, and husband, passed away peacefully Monday, April 1, at Vitas Hospice Center, Florida.

He is survived by his wife, Joyce Nicole, Margate, Florida; sons James P. Reil and his wife Michelle, Texas, and Michael Reil and his fiancee Bernadette, Maryland; daughters Julie Edstrom, Florida, and Maria Whitley, Hazleton; grandchildren Jodi Gallagher, Matthew and Kevin Edstrom, Josh Reil, Michael and Casey Reil, and Summer Whitley; and great-grandchildren Billy and Kendall Gallagher and Cora Edstrom; as well as his step-brother Richard Apple, and several nieces and nephews.

Born in Albany, James studied at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. He was employed for 30 years by Vibra-Tech Engineers, Inc, Hazleton, and retired as president of the company in 1995.

James lived in Albany, DuBois, and Conyngham, before settling in Drums, PA with his family, where he lived for nearly 50 years. He was preceded in death by his wife of 52 years, Patricia (Niedbala) Reil, sisters Mary Halloran and Julia Reil, brothers Walter Reil and Michael Reil, and step brother Clifford Apple.

James served in the US Army in the 32nd Battalion of the American Third Armored Division in West Germany, company C, Scout Platoon, from 1958-1960 as a specialist 4th class. He was pleased and proud to have served alongside Elvis Presley, and in 2013 was part of a special celebration at Graceland for the men who served with Elvis.

James was a member of Good Shepherd Church in Drums, and Word Family Church in Harwood, and, more recently, Calvary Chapel in Ft. Lauderdale, FL. James was known for his wisdom, as well as his kindness and willingness to help others in need. He volunteered throughout his life, including several years ministering to prisoners in an outreach program.

Private services are being arranged at the convenience of the family. An open house for family and friends to call will be held from 12-2 pm at 1630 Dons Avenue, Hazleton, on Saturday, April 27.


No services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.

James W. REIL

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Richard Apple

April 24, 2019

Jim, boy, I hope you remember the famous numbers - 322 - on Hudson Avenue. Do you recall that this is where the Apple/Reil dynasty began? You gave early signs of a career in engineering by building those model airplanes that we all teased you about. We all had our hobbies from Mary collecting her movie star photos, Clifford creating his own band, and Richard joining you in the basketball league at Trinity. There are too many stories to tell them all, but here is one that I will not pass up. The time was when we formed the “know your city” club. Off the four of us went to discover everything from the sewer system to the parks of Albany, New York. I remember this well as I was the one who jumped into the sewer and Mary had to pull me out. All of you had to exchange your clothes with me. I don’t think I have to mention how I smelled. In those days we did not carry much money (because we did not have any) so we had to jump on to the back of the trolley car and hang on to get back home. We were worried about you, Jim, but you held on for the entire ride. Esther had the dirty job of washing me from head to toe. This remembrance goes along with you always saying that we were a bunch of crazy kids especially when we skipped school together. Cliff, you, and I all had our birthdays together in July and Esther always said that you popped out of a fire cracker after the 4th of July. Years later you came to Ithaca to visit me and and we shared a good week-end together recalling your adventures with Elvis in the military. I feel blessed that we were able to get together the past 3 years in Florida. Take care and we will meet again some where in the future. God bless, Richard L. Apple

Julie Edstrom

April 23, 2019

I was so lucky to get to spend time with my Dad the last few years in Florida - this was the afternoon of his first visit in December of 2013 - we had lunch on the beach after I picked him up from the airport . We had a lot of adventures, from Dolphins and Marlins games to Everglades alligators, New Year's Eve parties, and Broadway shows. The kindest man I have ever met and proud to call him my father.

Karen Schell Howley

April 22, 2019

I remember Mr Reil from a young age, as I grew up with Julie and spent time at their home. He was a kind man and I know he will be dearly missed by all who knew him.

Debbie Calucci

April 22, 2019

I did not know James, but I have known his beautiful daughter Maria and grandaughter Summer for several years.
My thoughts and prayers are with them during this difficult time of grief. May he rest in eternal peace.

Stephen Malinchock

April 6, 2019

Jim was a good friend for many years and a Precious Brother In Christ who showed great kindness to me over many years .

I enjoyed the many dinners he , his wife Pat and I had together at their home .

I was very blessed to have known Jim and Pat for may years and I am thankful bothh to God and Jim for the Wisdom God imparted into through Jim's life .

Jim has truly entered into the Presence Of His Lord and now is enjoying his Eternal Reward in the Presence Of God forever .

Jim - your job was well done on this Earth and I will see you when it is my time to get there .

Steve Malinchock