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James "Jim" D. Began
(July 24, 1929 - July 2, 2011)

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U.S. Veteran

James (Jim) D. Began, 81, of Marengo, IL and Mesa, AZ died Saturday, July 2, 2011 in Mesa. He was born July 24, 1929, in Effingham, IL to Gerald and Gertrude Began. On Nov. 24, 1954 he married Margaret (Peggy) J. Delabar from St. Louis, MO. Peggy preceded Jim in death Nov. 16, 1992. After studying at Illinois State University, Jim received a Master’s degree in Business Administration in June of 1951. He joined the U.S. Air Force that same year and served for 4 years before being honorably discharged. Jim also served in the U.S. Air Force Reserves and was honorably discharged with the rank of Major. Jim taught high school in St. Genevieve for 11 years before moving to Crystal Lake, IL with his family. He taught for one year at Cary Grove High School and then moved into the role of Audio Visual Director for High School District 155 from 1967 – 88. After retiring from District 155 and death of his first wife, Jim remarried. He and Darlene Rausch were married in Marengo, IL on May 26, 1996. Jim and Darlene spent their married life living in both Marengo, IL and Mesa, AZ. Jim was a kind and gentle man who loved reading books – biographies, history, and other non-fiction materials. He was a licensed ham radio operator (W9JVP) for many years. He was also a lifelong St. Louis Cardinals fan. Jim is survived by his wife Darlene; his six children, Dan (Karen) Began of Paddock Lake, WI, Kevin (Holly) Began of Stevens, PA, Tim (Sharon) Began of West Chester, PA, Pam (Bob) Wyman of Crystal Lake, IL, Eileen (Dick) Walsh of Lake in the Hills, IL, and Keith (Cindi) Began of Hudson, WI; his three stepchildren, Cathy (Don) Dixon of Spokane, WA, Jack (Kathy) Rausch of Marengo, IL, and Pastor Jim (Chris) Rausch of Iola, KS; and his eleven grandchildren and step grandchildren, two great grandchildren; his brother Tom (Ann) Began of Effingham, IL and sister-in-law Mary Began of Fond du Lac, WI; and many nieces and nephews. Jim was preceded in death by his parents, four brothers, and one grandson. The visitation will be held at Skaja-Bachmann Funeral Home in Crystal Lake, IL on Friday, August 26, 4:00 - 8:00 PM. The memorial service will be held at Willow Creek Crystal Lake on Saturday, August 27 at 10:00 AM. A reception in Marengo will be held following the memorial service. For anyone wishing to send an expression of condolence, the family suggests sending a memorial to: Mesa Fire Dept. PO Box 1466, Mesa, AZ. 85211 Attn: Station 6 or Banner Heart Hospital c/o Banner Health Foundation 2025 N. 3rd Street Ste 205, Phoenix, AZ. 85004


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