James “Jim” L. Downing, 89, of Orleans, passed away at 12:01 AM on Wednesday, February 03, 2016 at Stonebridge Health Campus in Bedford, IN

James was born in Marion, Grant County, Indiana, the son of Virgil L. and Mabel I. (Sloderbeck) Downing.

James and Donna M. Bockmier were married on June 6, 1948 in the Van Buren United Methodist Church.

He was a member of the Van Buren United Methodist Church and a resident of Van Buren, IN until 2002. He has worshiped with the congregations of the Orleans Mount Pleasant Baptist Church and Orleans United Methodist Church since moving to Orleans, IN.

James was a U.S. Army veteran of WWII, having served with the 773rd Tank Destroyer Battalion till it was disbanded, then with other units in the European Theatre. He was a member of the

American Legion Brown-Doyal Post 368 and a member of the Orleans American Legion Warren Brock Post 69.

He is a member of UAW Local 977, having retired on September 1991 after 35 years of service as a die-maker at the G.M. Corp. CPC Group Plant in Marion, IN. He was previously employed by the Lynch Corp. and Daly Bros. Shoe Co.

He is survived by his loving wife and best friend of 67 years; one daughter, Beth A. Hall (Frank) of Orleans; one son; James M. Downing (Susan) of Orleans; five grandchildren and spouses and eleven great grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents; two sisters, Margaret Maxine McMillan and Mary Evelyn Mathias.

The funeral will be on Sunday, February 7, 2016 at 4:00 PM at Ochs-Tetrick Funeral Home with Reverend Michael Williams officiating with military rites conducted by the Orleans American Legion Post 69.

Friends are invited to visitation at the funeral home on Sunday from 12:00 until service time.

The graveside service will be on Monday, February 8, 2016 at 11:30 AM at Van Buren Cemetery, Van Buren, IN.

Preferred memorials may be made to any church listed above, Rick Magill Memorial Clothe a Child Fund or the donor’s favorite charity.

Online condolences may be sent to the family at