James Richard Crookston passed away peacefully on November 5, 2019 at his home in Stow.
Jim was born on March 2, 1930 in Akron to the late Anthony and Mary Crookston (Heimann). He was proud to have grown up in Kenmore attending both Immaculate Conception and Kenmore High School.
Jim met Patricia Thomas at a high school dance and immediately knew that he had found his future wife. While Pat wasn't nearly as confident, she eventually relented and they were married in 1951 shortly before Jim left for the Army. They returned to Ohio in 1953 and Jim started a successful roofing and spouting company. In 1960, Jim purchased AJC Hatchet Company from his father and grew the business from a part-time undertaking in a small Kenmore shop to a well-known and respected name in the roofing industry. Jim continued to come to work everyday at AJC until the fall of 2018.
Although Jim left Kenmore High School "with the full cooperation of the faculty" before finishing, he lived his life with a sense of optimism and curiosity that outweighed formal education. He was a self-taught businessman, musician and tinkerer who could "fix anything" (although he routinely lost his glasses along the way). Jim read the newspaper daily, often times writing letters to the editor extolling the virtues of freedom. He was a lover of children and dogs and all things AV, producing countless wedding videos and slide shows for family and friends. Jim worked hard throughout his life, but was a gentle-hearted family man who loved to laugh and wasn't afraid to laugh at himself. His humility and humor served as an example for all who knew him.
In addition to his parents, Jim was preceded in death by his wife of 65 years Patricia Ann Crookston (Thomas), brothers Bob, Tom, Tony, Joe, Donald, Albert and Leonard Crookston, sister Helen Rowbottom along with great-grandson Teddy Bovard.
Jim is survived by his sisters Margaret Norris and Martha Howard and his seven children: Cynthia (Doug) Lane, Margaret (Bob) Bovard, Linda (John) Livigni, Kathryn (Rick) Rodgers, Matthew (Kathy), James (Kelley) and Thomas (Melanie) along with many nieces and nephews.
Jim is also survived by his 19 grandchildren, 21 great-grandchildren and 3 great-great-grandchildren all of whom brought him great joy until the end.
We will always love you Boss. Your work here is done, Pat is waiting for you.
The family would like to thank "Angels" Camille Eaton, Glenda Webster and Karen Watts for their expert care of Jim especially during his final months.
Cremation has taken place. The family will receive guests from 9:00-11:00 AM on Saturday November 23rd at Holy Family Catholic Church in Stow with Mass of the Christian Burial immediately following.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to either Holy Family Catholic Church or the Foundation for Economic Education.