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Welcome to the memorial page for

Jim E. Gager

May 2, 1940 ~ November 24, 2017 (age 77)

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Jim Edward Gager, 77, of Moline, died Friday, November 24, 2017, at Clarissa Cook Hospice House, Bettendorf, IA.

Visitation will be from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, November 28, 2017 at Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, 6601 38th Ave. Funeral services will be held at 10:00 a.m. Wednesday, November 29, 2017 at Bethany Baptist Church, 700 35th Ave, Moline, followed by burial at Roselawn Cemetery. Memorials may be made to Bethany Baptist Church, Quad City Symphony, or Youth Hope.

Jim was born on May 2, 1940, in Moline, IL, the son of Edgar Clarence and Mary Viola Swim Gager. He married Helen M. Pearson on September 5, 1964 at Bethany Baptist Church in Moline. Jim was a 1958 United Township High School graduate. He received his Bachelors degree from WIU in 1967, Masters degree in 1978, and ED Specialist degree at WIU in 1981. He also was in the US Navy Reserves, serving on active duty as a GMG 2 on the USS Floyd B. Parks (DD884) in Vietnam in 1968 where he was exposed to Agent Orange, quite possibly resulting in his multiple illnesses in recent years.

 Jim started his science teaching career at Wilson Junior High in 1969. He transferred to Moline High School in 1973, teaching biology I and II, and chemistry until retiring in 1999. He taught in the CORE Program at Moline High School from 1992-1999. Jim was known as a creative, enthusiastic, motivational, and inspirational teacher. He coached girls’ basketball and boys’ tennis, plus videotaped varsity football and basketball games for years. He was recognized as a master float builder for the annual Homecoming parades. In 1999 he received the Dispatch Argus Master Teacher Award.

At Bethany Baptist, he served as a youth sponsor, Bible teacher, Vice-Chairman, Deacon, trustee, choir member, drama coach, and more. After Jim retired, he went on to work part time as a travel agent as a Hawaii Specialist, volunteer coordinator for the Quad City Symphony Orchestra, and a Second Fiddle Sale director. Jim and Helen traveled to Hawaii numerous times, taking friends and family on most of their trips. He also enjoyed woodworking in his spare time.

Survivors include his wife, Helen; his sister in law, Virginia Gager; brother in law, Arnulfo Gloria; nieces, Vicki (James) Bongovanni and Michelle Gager; nephews, Daniel (Mony) Johnson and Michael Gager; plus, several grand nieces and nephews. He will also be missed by Helen’s family, Frank and Virginia Ryner, their three daughters, Judy (Jeff) Donohue, Caryn (Bryant) Swanson, and Sandy (Kevin) Jones, and their children.

He was preceded in death by his parents, sister Janet Gloria, brother Larry Gager, amd nieces Linda Reeder and Kathy Atkinson.

Memories may be shared online by visiting

 Service Information

November 28, 2017

4:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd.
6601 38th Avenue
Moline, IL 61265

Funeral Service
November 29, 2017

10:00 AM
Bethany Baptist Church
700 35th Avenue Place
Moline, IL 61265

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