James R. “Jim” Billinger
James R. “Jim” Billinger, 70, Hays, died Monday, January 4, 2021 at his home.
He was born July 21, 1950 in Hays, the son of Joseph “Red” and Viola “Ollie” (Bieker) Billinger. He was a 1968 graduate of St. Francis Seminary in Victoria. On May 27, 1977 he was united in marriage to Shirley DeCamp. They later divorced and she preceded him in death in 2002. James served his country for twenty years in the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Army Reserve. He was a sanitation worker for the City of Hays, active in the Senior Companion Program, a greeter at Walmart, and worked at DSNWK helping those who needed extra help in life. James was a member of the Shooting Stars Singles Square Dance Club, enjoyed going to Fort Hays State football and basketball games with his sons, karaoke, and family get-togethers. He loved his sons, grandchildren, and was a friend to everyone. A very proud grandpa, he was affectionately called “Papa” by his grandchildren.
Survivors include his mother Viola “Ollie” Billinger of Hays, two sons: Philip Billinger of Hays and Matt Billinger and wife Julie of Topeka, five brothers: Jerry Billinger and wife LeaAnn of Topeka, Kenneth Billinger and wife Sheri of Carrollton, GA, Randy Billinger and husband Roger Layton of Denver, CO, Ron Billinger and wife Sue of Highlands Ranch, CO, and Larry Billinger and wife Jeanne of Westminster, CO, three sisters: Linda English and husband John of Shawnee, Lora Suther and husband Marvin of Henrico, VA, and Jean Hertel and husband James of Victoria, two grandchildren: Ava and Blaine Billinger, companion Barbara Bunker of Hays, and numerous nieces and nephews.
He was preceded in death by his father.
Mass of Christian Burial will be at 10:00 am on Saturday, January 9, 2021 at Immaculate Heart of Mary Catholic Church, with Fr. Nick Parker officiating. Burial with military honors by the Hays VFW Post #9076 Honor Guard will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery. Visitation will be from 5:00 pm until 8:00 on Friday and from 9:00 am until 9:45 on Saturday, all at Hays Memorial Chapel Funeral Home. A Daughters of Isabella rosary will be at 5:30 pm followed by a vigil service at 6:30 pm, both on Friday at the funeral home. Memorials are suggested to the Senior Companion Program or the Shooting Stars Singles Square Dance Club. Condolences and memories of James may be shared with the family at www.haysmemorial.com
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