James H. "Jim" Kiffel, 81, died peacefully at his home on Wednesday, April 13, 2016.
He was born in Kenosha, Wis., on August 24, 1934, the son of the late Herman and Hertha (Heimsoth) Kiffel.
Jim was a graduate of Kenosha Bradford High School where he excelled in many sports. His 1950 undefeated football team is recognized as one of the all-time best teams in state history. He joined the Marine Corps, serving during the Korean War and attained the rank of Sergeant. Jim was honorably discharged in 1956 and always held great pride to have served as a Marine.
Jim married his sweetheart, Gloria Ann Otto, on July 3, 1954, in Oceanside, California. He would say she was the only "Angel" or "Saint" he ever knew. After living most of their lives in Kenosha, the couple retired to Madison to be near their children and grandchildren. Gloria preceded him in death on February 20, 2012. Every moment he lived and conversation he had after involved thoughts of her.
Jim was employed at AMC/Chrysler Corporation for 35 years. He began in the Finance department, moved to Industrial Engineering rising to the level of Production Manager and retired as Plant Manager at Chrysler in Canada. Throughout his career, Jim was instrumental in making the annual AMC-United Fund of Kenosha a success, and he originated the Engine Plant Christmas drive for the needy. He was a board member of AMC Credit Union, the local Salvation Army, the Junior Achivement Organization and a member of the Elks Club. He taught Production Management courses at Racine Tech. Jim was an avid Wisconsin Badger, Milwaukee Brewers and Chicago Cubs fan and also loved hunting, fishing and golfing throughout his life.
Jim is survived by his four children, Lori (Michael) Hughes, Jim (Rachel) Kiffel, Jane (David) Schneider and Michael (Sherri) Kiffel, stepdaughter Terri (Mark) Hubbard, his sister Joanne (Joe) Vagnoni and many grandchildren and great grandchildren.
In addition to his parents and wife, Jim was preceded in death by his brothers Thomas Kiffel and William Kiffel, and an infant granddaughter.
A funeral was held at 11 a.m. on Monday, April 18, 2016, at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, 5701 Raymond Rd. Madison with Rev. Sheryl L. Erickson is presiding. Burial will be in Sunset Memory Gardens. A visitation was held on Sunday, April 17, 2016, at Cress Center, 6021 University Ave. Madison, and also from 10 a.m. until the time of the service at the church on Monday.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to Good Shepherd Lutheran Church, Madison Wisconsin.