James H Hartman

1929 ~ 2021 (age 92)


James H. Hartman, passed away at home with his devoted wife Nancy and his loving daughter Susan at his side on December 3, 2021, at 8:18 p.m. Jim was born in Catlin, IN, February 9, 1929 to Tillie S. and Carl B. Hartman. He was the third boy and the baby of the family who dearly loved his older brothers Bill and Marvin. He was especially close to Marvin and his wife Kathryn who filled an important role in his life after the death of his father in an auto accident when Jim was 18 years old and a freshman at Indiana State Teachers College.


Jim was a proud Sycamore Athlete and Lambda Chi Alpha Fraternity brother throughout his life. He was President of the ISU Alumni Association when the Sycamores advanced to the NCAA basketball finals on the wings of Larry Bird. His loyalty to ISU earned him the Annual Jim Hartman Golf Outing on his home course that was always a big event. In 2018 at the age of 90 he was awarded the John P. Newton Spirit Award for life long support of his Alma Mater.


After college graduation in 1951, Jim accepted a teaching and coaching job in Bicknell IN where he spotted the love of his life singing in the Methodist Church Choir. It took until December to ask Nancy Kelley out on a date; but after that he picked up the pace. They were engaged in February and married on April 9, 1952 - a marriage that would be a strong one for the next 69 + years. Daughter Susan was born in 1953 and her sister Karen in 1957.


In 1954, Jim accepted a job in Sullivan, where he would spend the rest of his career in Education. He taught Industrial Arts, coached High School Football and Junior High Basketball for the for the next 11 years.


Since moving to Sullivan, Jim had earned his Masters Degree from ISU, and was working on a Guidance Counselor Certificate going to night school when he became head football coach in 1962 to 1965. During that time unbelievable family  tragedy struck when his youngest daughter Karen was diagnosed with Ewing Sarcoma Bone Cancer in 1964.  She succumbed to the disease October 2, 1965.


After that loss, the Guidance Director position came open when Dale C. Billman retired. He asked Jim to take the position as he had watched him interact with his students and athletes, and knew Jim had the temperament and skills for the job. A job Jim did well until his retirement in 1993.


When Nancy retired from REMCin 1996, she was asked to be the Travel Hostess at First Bank and Trust. For the next 15 years Jim and Nancy traveled the world, Nancy was the hostess and Jim was the baggage boy! What a great time in their life together and so well deserved.


Faith, family, community and good friends have always been central to life for Jim. Loyal members of the First United Methodist Church, Jim and Nancy have always treasured and found strength in their church family and fellowship committee friends.


Jim was a member of the Sullivan Elks #911 and a fixture on the golf course until he was 89 years old. He dearly loved all his golf buddies and Rinky Dink cronies. A good day at the golf course would be when he beat a Rinky Dink newcomer, usually one of his former students or athletes.


Jim was part of a volunteer workforce that built the back nine holes of the golf course, as well as the Sullivan City Pool.


He was the Jaycees Outstanding Young Man in 1962, served on the Sullivan County Park and Lake Board for many years, and enjoyed his membership in the Sullivan County Retired Teachers Association.


“The longer you live, the more of a vested interest you have in heaven”  Jim’s vested interest is considerable. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brothers, his sister-in-law Kathryn, his daughter Karen, his niece Sue Ellen Warner and his son-in-law Michael D. Doty in 2012.


He is survived by his wife Nancy, his daughter Susan, his grandson James M. Doty and his wife Elizabeth, great granddaughter Eleanor Michael “Nelle” Doty and great-grandson Brooks Hartman Doty; his step granddaughter Andrea G. Cook, and great granddaughters Savana G. and Sophia G. Cook; Much loved nieces Anne Lynk (late husband Gary), Claudia Doan (late husband Ivan),  Kathy Eliopaulos and her husband Chris, Sherry Hartman and her husband Ron Burr, and many loving great nieces and nephews and their families.


Funeral Services will be Tuesday December 14th at the First United Methodist Church in Sullivan at 2:00 p.m. Visitation will be from 12:00 - 2:00 prior to the service. A reception in the church annex will follow.  In lieu of flowers, memorial donations are suggested for the Sullivan County Community Foundation, the Sullivan County Humane Society, or the Church/Charity of your choice.


The family encourages Covid Safety guidelines to be followed at the service. Jim always believed in doing his part for the greater good, so he went to heaven fully vaccinated and boosted.  

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James H Hartman, please visit our floral store.


December 14, 2021

12:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Sullivan First United Methodist Church

Funeral Service
December 14, 2021

2:00 PM
Sullivan First United Methodist Church

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