James E. Steffens, 94, Columbia City, died in the company of family at 6:50 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 13, 2020, at Parkview Whitley Hospital, Columbia City.
He was born on Nov. 21, 1925, in Toledo, Ohio, a son of the late Edward A. and Francis E. (Gunn) Steffens. His formative years were spent in Toledo and Fort Wayne. He graduated from South Side High School 1946.
On Dec. 3, 1945, he entered the U.S. Army. He became a radio operator with the 532 Engineer Boat and Shore Regiment. He received his honorable discharge on March 31, 1947.
On Nov. 10, 1951, he was united in marriage to Dorothy A. Adams. They made their home in Fort Wayne until June 1953 when they moved to Tri-Lakes. Dorothy died on Nov. 19, 2003.
He began his work career with International Harvester, Fort Wayne. He then became an insurance agent for Western and Southern Life Insurance for over 30 years.
He was a member of American Legion Post 98, Columbia City and the NRA.
He enjoyed fishing, camping, woodcrafts, and oil painting. He was fond of his trips to Michigan, especially Frankenmuth or to visit the lighthouses of the Great Lakes. He delighted in researching and collecting guns. Every Wednesday he traveled to the Liberty Diner in Fort Wayne to meet with friends and family for a meal.
He is survived by three daughters, Dianna J. (Randall) Martz, Claypool, Karen (John) Western, Columbia City and Victoria C. Steffens, Fort Wayne; five grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.
Additionally, he was preceded in death by a brother, Floyd Steffens.
The funeral service is 2 p.m. Wednesday at Smith & Sons Funeral Home, Columbia City. Burial is at the Adams Cemetery. Visitation is noon Wednesday until the service at the funeral home.
Preferred memorials are to the Humane Society of Whitley County.