James Harlan Beatty, a 54 year resident of Hinsdale, Illinois, died at his home on Monday, April 27 following a brief illness. He was 85.
Jim was born in 1936 in Chicago to Stewart Beatty of Alton, Illinois and Margaret Harlan Beatty of Ambia, Indiana. He spent his early life in the small farming community of Kentland, Indiana before leaving to attend DePauw University in Greencastle, Indiana where he majored in History, joined Phi Delta Theta Fraternity, and earned the title of campus ping-pong champion.
Following graduation in 1958, Jim found employment as an Account Executive at Merrill Lynch in Chicago, a position he would hold for the next 47 years. In 1963 he met and began dating Ann Migely of Wayne, Illinois. The couple married in 1964. Their twins, James Harlan Jr. and Kathleen Ann, were born in 1965. The family relocated to Hinsdale Illinois in 1967.
In the ensuing years Jim became an active volunteer within the Village of Hinsdale, serving on the Hinsdale Parks & Recreation Committee and as a Village trustee. He served on the Board of Trustees for Benedictine University in Lisle for over 10 years.
Jim will be remembered as a great enjoyer of people. Everyone he met interested him. Jim maintained a large and ever-expanding circle of friends which he treated like family, with generosity and affection. Those who knew him well could look forward to frequent daytime phone calls filled with jokes, jibes, stories, and observations on life, golf and baseball.
While Jim always stood ready to chat, he was equally ready to listen. A man of expansive understanding and sympathy, Jim always wanted to know how you were doing. If things weren’t going well, he wanted to know how he could help.
Though he spent most of his life in and around a major city, Jim always considered himself a small-town boy. A frequent visitor to his hometown of Kentland, he also excelled at discovering the “small towns” hidden in big places, be they book shops, wine shops, pie shops, newsstands, barber shops, or any one of the small restaurants where he took his morning tea and toast (with marmalade).
Jim’s interests included family, bird watching, and American history, especially the Civil War (he owned some 500 books on the subject). An avid golfer, he was a lifelong member of Chicago Golf Club in Wheaton. He belonged to Royal Dornoch Golf Club in Scotland and Old Florida Golf Club in Naples. A lifelong Cardinals fan, he also enjoyed rooting against the Chicago Cubs and the Notre Dame Fighting Irish.
Jim now goes to rejoin his beloved father, Stewart Beatty Sr., and mother, Margaret Harlan Beatty (Kammerer). He leaves behind him his wife of 57 years Ann M. Beatty, his brother Stewart Beatty and sister-in-law Kay Beatty, his children and their spouses James H. Beatty Jr. & Clare E. Sullivan, Kathleen & Robert Wunderlich, and five grandchildren: Alice Beatty, Margaret Beatty, Robert Wunderlich Jr., Chad Wunderlich, and Drew Wunderlich.
Jim will be buried at Fairlawn Cemetery in Kentland on Friday, April 30. There will be a memorial mass at St. John of the Cross Church in Western Springs on Saturday, May 8, at 11 am, with a visitation hour beginning at 10 am. Please register to attend the mass at stjohnofthecross.org. Memorial gifts are being accepted at the Evans Scholars Foundation, 2501 Patriot Blvd., Glenview, IL 60626 (wgaesf.org).
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