James Calvin Kieffer Sr.
December 20, 1944 – February 16, 2021
James Calvin Kieffer, Sr. “shuffled off to Buffalo” (his words – taken from the musical “42nd Street”) from Sentara Northern VA Medical Center on Tuesday, February 16, 2021. During the last year of his life, he had faced numerous medical challenges, but he never complained or gave up.
He was born in Confluence, PA on December 20, 1944 to Paul Franklin Kieffer, Sr. and Freda Brown Kieffer.
He is predeceased by his parents, his brother Paul Franklin Kieffer, Jr, and wife, Vonda Kieffer; his sister Mary Louise Kieffer; his ex-wife and mother of his son, Jean Kieffer; and his beloved wife of more than 35 years Joanne (Jody) Sipple Kieffer.
He is survived by his beloved son James Calvin Kieffer, Jr. of Pittsburgh, PA and the love of his life, his wife of three years, Myra Kieffer.
Also surviving him is a brother, Dorson Bruce Kieffer of Lake Anna, VA and nieces Gale Kieffer Schwartz (Lynn) of Englewood, Florida; Christine Mottern of DuBois, PA; and Vonda Morris (Jay), of Hampton, VA and numerous great nieces and nephews and great-great nieces and nephews.
Also mourning his passing are Myra’s children Marcus Jenner (Angela) of Bunker Hill, WV; David Funkhouser (Cynthia) of Bakerton, WV; and Dawn Gomez (Fernando) of Boyce, VA. He so enjoyed being a grandfather – he said when he married Myra that not only did he gain a wife, but grandchildren as well – six of them – they were the delight of his life -- Austin Jenner (Marissa); Amy Vincent (Chris); Sophie Jenner; Samuel Jenner; Matthew Funkhouser; and Josie Funkhouser. The highlight of 2020 for him was attending the wedding of granddaughter Amy.
Among those left to treasure his memory are the numerous family members of Jerry Funkhouser, Myra’s late husband, who had embraced him as one of their own.
Jim was a compassionate and caring man who throughout his lifetime had a very special bond with many animals, both wild and domesticated. He leaves behind his beloved kitties – Izzy, Miranda, and Kit-Cat.
Jim was a man of many talents and experiences.
Growing up, he enjoyed singing in a Barber Shop Quartet and never forgot the words to many classical songs. After a recent procedure while coming
out of anesthesia, he entertained the nurses at Sentara Hospital by singing “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”
He received his degree from the Art Institute of Pittsburgh and had a brief Navy career before receiving an honorable medical discharge. He was a newspaper photographer in Pittsburgh as a young man and later had a painting business with his brother Dorson in PA. He later worked for his brother Paul in his plastering business in the Washington area. Among their jobs were the Washington Metro Stations. During his 20’s he supplemented his income by working as a server and bar tender.
He and his late wife Jody produced several magazines for the military in the Washington area during the 70’s. He spent time at the White House as a photographer during the Ford Administration. He was an artist and viewed the world through the eyes of a painter and photographer.
He was an avid gardener, at one time making and selling Bonsai trees. He worked as a printer for many years in the Northern Virginia area. After a forced medical retirement, he enjoyed supervising the Garden Department at Frank’s Nursery in Woodbridge. He enjoyed food and recipes and was a talented cook.
Jim had a very strong faith in God and had found his church home and many treasured friends at Good Shepherd UMC in Dale City.
Because of Covid, there will be no service at this time. Interment will be at a later date in Somerset, PA where he will rest with his family members.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
James Calvin Kieffer Sr.
February 22, 2021
MY CONDOLENCES TO ALL THE FAMILY MEMBERS
February 21, 2021
We have truly lost a shining light who will be missed from our "Pastors' Coffee " discussions and all other Good Shepherd events. In my first dealings with Jim I found a man of great character. That quickly developed into great respect for an articulate well educated individual with significant knowledge of Scripture, among other topics. I learned much from Jim and will be forever grateful for his sharing. With much gratitude, I pass on a thank you for those of us in the study that enjoyed his quiet but always insightful way of saving his best comments till the end of study to send everyone home with fuel for thoughts for the week. God 's blessings now and always for his family and friends as we challenge to move forward. Special words I read this week that are most appropriate, "I am not gone. My soul lives on but in a better place surrounded by the Light of God and all of His glory and grace."
February 21, 2021
Mr. James was an active member at the Pastor's coffee gatherings in Good Shepherd United Methodist Church where we were meeting regularly. His interventions during the discussions were always much appreciated. He will be dearly missed.