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James Dean Russell, 74, of Memphis died on December 13, 2008 at Scotland County Memorial Hospital in Memphis.

He was born the son of Earnest Michael “Mike” and Demma LaVaughn (Regnold) Russell October 8, 1934 in Scotland County, MO.

Jim attended school in the Memphis and Bible Grove areas, graduating from Memphis High School in 1952. He moved to the Kansas City area to find work and met his first wife Judy Jenkins. They were married on March 23, 1969 in Brookfield, MO. They settled down on her father’s farm just outside Missouri City, MO where they took in foster children, due to not being able to have any of their own.

He accepted Christ as his Savior and joined Woodland Baptist Church in 1980.

Jim and Judy divorced in 1984.

Jim married Jean Ann Dockery of Trenton, MO on May 12, 1985 in rural Clay County, MO. They lived for a while in Excelsior Springs, later moving to Trenton. Jim and Jeannie were divorced in June of 1989.

Jim married Barbara Jean Smith of Jamesport, MO on August 4, 1990 in Trenton. They were divorced around 1995.

He moved back to Memphis in 1996. Jim worked for Ron and Debbie Kraus at DJ’s Outdoor and Spirits in Memphis for a few years before moving in with his niece Brenda and her family. In 2003 Jim suffered a massive stroke and moved into the Scotland County Care Center.

Jim worked at a variety of jobs during his lifetime, including at the Ford Motor Company plant in Claycomo, MO, and long-haul truck driving. He was a very accomplished mechanic, and worked on many cars, trucks, and tractors. He enjoyed hunting and fishing, and was a great favorite of his young nephews and nieces.

He was preceded in death by his parents; three sisters — who died in childhood — Janice Russell, Shirley Russell, and Jody Russell; two step-fathers, Dillard Cline and John Lutz; and a niece, Pamela Russell.

He is survived by a sister, Bettie Corn of Memphis; brother Frank Russell and wife Lee Ann of Memphis; a half brother Hughie Cline and wife Kathy of Memphis; and a half sister Ruby Hunter and husband Gary of Blue Springs, MO; his nieces, Terry Christman of West Palm Beach, FL, Susan Boyd of Ottumwa, IA, Brenda DeMarce and husband Karl of Memphis, Jana Bickel and husband Greg of California, and Angel Grogan and husband John of Kirksville; nephews Todd Cline and wife Anita of Memphis, Chris Cline and wife Sarah of Smithville, MO, Jeff Cline and wife Kate of Memphis, and J.B. Piepmeier and Jesse Piepmeier, both of Blue Springs, MO; many great nieces and nephews, cousins and friends.

Memorial services will be held at 10:30 a.m., Friday, December 26, 2008 at the Gerth Funeral Chapel in Memphis with the Rev. Charles Hammack officiating. Memorials are to the family or to the Santa’s Helpers program in Scotland County and may be left at or mailed to the Gerth Funeral Service, 115 S. Main St., Memphis, MO 63555.

Condolences may be sent to Mr. Russell’s family via email at