James Barclay Toole, age 88, of Manter, Kansas died July 7, 2015 in rural Stanton County, Kansas. He was born in Knoxville, Tennessee on September 27, 1926 to Nancy Mary (Rudder) and Barclay Wallace Toole. He grew up at Toole’s Bend along the Tennessee River south of Knoxville. He enjoyed hunting and fishing while he grew up there.
Jim came out west to Kansas in 1942 to work for his Uncle Howard on his farm. He rode the train from Tennessee to Syracuse, Kansas to work during the summer and returned to Knoxville to attend school. He graduated from Faragut High School in 1943 and was drafted into the U.S. Army during WW II.
He was with the 7th Infantry Division also known as the “Hourglass Division”. Jim completed basic training in Florida and California. He boarded a ship at Seattle, Washington and went to Okinawa, Japan. He was a demolitionist during his time there and learned carpentry skills. He spent time in Japan and Korea. After 2 years of serving his country he was discharged with the rank of Tech Sergeant.
In 1942, Jim bought 160 acres before he went to the Army in Baca County Colorado. When he came back from the war he established his farm there and purchased a house from the Carbine Black Plant in Ryus, Kansas. The home was moved to Baca County. Jim married Juan Bernice Kilgore on May 19, 1950 in Manter, Kansas. They spent 64 years together on the land they loved. To this union four children were born: Lonnie James, Ronald Dean, Alan Lee and Debra Lynn.
In the late 1940’s, he owned a Cessna 140 that he enjoyed flying. Jim was on a traveling baseball team in his twenties. He enjoyed playing and watched a ball game nearly every night on television. He enjoyed hunting and fishing with his kids and the hunting trips with friends in Colorado. A skilled carpenter, he built many homes in Manter, Johnson and Richfield. He enjoyed working in his shop and building projects. He built each one of his kids a rolled top desk and made hand carved ducks. No two were alike; he had just as much joy giving them away as making them. His family will always remember him heading out the back door with a cold Dr. Pepper to work in his shop or go check fields. He loved his family and was a great Dad.
Always willing to lend a helping hand he was a man of integrity, generosity and kindness. His heart was in his farming. He took pride in his work; that was true with anything he did; always to perfection. Although farming had its challenges, he was most happy and content to be tilling the land he loved with his John Deere tractor. He will be sorely missed.
He is survived by son, Ronald Toole and wife Delores of Manter, Kansas; daughter, Debra Fieldgrove and husband Matt of Somerton, Arizona; three grandchildren, J.W. Toole, Dustin Toole, and Britt Toole; and 12 great-grandchildren.
Jim is preceded in death by his parents; wife, Juan; sons, Alan Toole and Lonnie Toole; sister, Barbara Jones, and brother, Jack Toole.
Memorial service will be held at 10:30 AM on Tuesday, July 14, 2015 at the United Methodist Church in Manter, Kansas with Reverend Richard Fitzgerald officiating. Inurnment will follow at the Stanton County Cemetery in Johnson, Kansas, with military graveside rites conducted by VFW Post #3684. Memorial contributions may be given to the United Methodist Church of Manter in care of Garnand Funeral Home, PO Box 715, Johnson, Kansas 67855.