James Dunbar Parker, 80, of Leawood, Kansas, passed away on June 6, 2019. He was born on July 3, 1938, in Sioux Falls, SD, to James Abraham Parker and Doris (Whitman) Parker. Jim was raised in Minnesota, where he graduated from Edina High School. He attended Beloit College (WI), where he studied Economics, played varsity tennis, and joined the Beta Theta Pi Fraternity. At Beloit, he met Susie Hindle, with whom he celebrated 56 years of marriage before her death in 2018. Jim moved to Kansas City in 1960, where he worked as a stockbroker at Harris Upham Co. He boasted about meeting President Truman, who was a client at the firm. On November 22, 1963, while at the Kansas City Board of Trade, Jim recalled watching the tickertape scroll by that read, “The President has been shot,” and regretted not tearing it off at that moment. After his career as a stockbroker, Jim became a traveling salesman for Peerless Chain Company, and later a manufacturer’s representative for the William Shaw Company. His CB handle during his road warrior days was “Jim Dandy,” and he and his family were greatly entertained listening to truckers’ chatter.
Jim was an avid golfer until his retirement and continued to closely follow the sport. He loved his Kansas City Chiefs, and for many years could be found at the Longbranch with friends, cultivating his fantasy football team. Jim listened to Linda Ronstadt, laughed at Gene Wilder, and cried at the end of “Brian’s Song.” He taught his children how to save and invest money, fish in the Minnehaha crick, and read a racing form.
The Parker family wishes to thank the entire Holmes family for adopting all of us nearly fifty years ago. Some of Jim’s best memories were made with this special clan during legendary weekends at Ak-Sar-Ben, Thanksgiving Days, and during Uncle Parker’s reading of “The Night Before Christmas.”
Jim’s surviving family members are his sister, Jane Parker of The Villages, FL; daughter, Jennifer Parker Burrus (David) of Leawood; son, Dr. Jamie Parker (Derin) of Watkinsville, GA; and grandchildren, Jimmy Parker, Holly Parker, Will Burrus, and Parker Burrus.
Details for a rousing remembrance of Jim’s life will be forthcoming. Until then, please consider a contribution to Ronald McDonald House in his honor, 2502 Cherry Street, Kansas City, MO 64108.