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James "Jim" E. Lease

May 2, 1939 — January 18, 2023

Belle Center

James "Jim" E. Lease


James “Jim” E. Lease, 83, of Belle Center, Ohio, passed away on Wednesday, January 18, 2023, at the Ohio State Medical Center in Columbus. He was born at home in Hardin County (Yelverton), Ohio, on May 2, 1939, to the late Leonard and Edna (Schoffner) Lease. He is also preceded in death by his siblings: Helen Cavin, Leonard Lease Jr., Virginia Graves, Josephine Wilson, Robert Lease, Nancy Walters and nephews Leonard Lease and Wayne Cavin.

He is survived by nieces: Judy Roberts of Sidney, OH, Cheryl Segraves of Huntingdon, TN, Michelle Mebane of Bruceton, TN, nephews: Fred Wilson of Houston, TX, Larry Graves of Mesa, AZ, Clifford Graves of Edon, OH, Rodney Lease and Duane Lease of Kenton, OH, David Lease of East Berne, NY, Chris Lease of Toledo, OH, Bryan Cavin of DeGraff, OH, Jim Cavin of Wilmington, NC, many great nieces and nephews and special friends: Lisa Davidson, Julie McManus, Josh Johnston, and other beloved friends at RTC; his dog Cody, and his very caring neighbors, Dave and Sue Patrick.

Jim was a 1957 graduate of Kenton High School. After serving four years in the Military, Jim moved to Los Angeles CA and worked as a Senior Buyer for both NCR Systemedia Division and Universal Moldings. In 1981 Jim moved to Tennessee to work for Jartran Truck Rental as a Regional Operations Manager in Memphis. In 1995 Jim went to work for Easter Seals as a Residential Manager for Supported Living Homes and Group Homes that provided a safe and pleasant living environment for individuals with disabilities. In 2006 Jim returned back to Belle Center and went to work in Logan County for RTC as a Support Specialist.

It is impossible to put so much character into a few words. Jim was an amazingly witty, loving, caring and compassionate man. He impacted the life of everyone he came in contact with. As a Support Specialist at RTC, Jim provided not only support for the individuals he worked with, he loved them and had a way of making sure they knew it. Whether holding their hand while walking or just taking the time to talk with them, when asked, “who is your best friend?”, the answer was always “Jim”, and no matter who said it, there was always a smile. Jim’s impact went so much farther than he ever knew.  The love for “Everyone’s Best Friend” was and will forever be immeasurable. 

At work, Jim was known for writing special little post-it notes with his personal messages and all who received them felt wonderful getting sentiments from him saying things like, “You are the only reason I come to this place”, or “I love you most of all”.  We would then find out that he gave the same note of affection to several people at the same time! Jim cannot be summed up by words, his actions were far too impactful, his love was real, his heart genuine, his friendship life changing, he truly was and forever will be, “Everyone’s Best Friend’.

Per Jim’s wishes, he will be cremated.

Memorial contributions may be made in Jim’s memory to Barely Used Pets, 844 Jackson Hill Road, Urbana, Ohio 43078.


(family authored obituary)


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