James Lyle Kappler, 89 of Lynnwood, Washington passed away in Seattle, WA on September 9, 2023 after a brief illness in the hospital.
Funeral ceremonies will be held Saturday September 30, 2023 at 10am at Trintiy Lutheran Church 1330 13th Street, Moline, Il. The burial will be at Moline Memorial Park. Donations can be made to Trinity Lutheran Church. Esterdahl Mortuary & Crematory, Ltd., Moline is assisting the family.
James was born in Moline, Illinois on June 24, 1934 to Genevieve E. Rahn and Lyle W. Kappler who raised he and his sister, Judy. He attended Moline High School before studying Business Administration at Augustana College and graduating in 1956. He then went on to spend two years as an US Army Combat Engineer stationed in Germany and served in the Illinois National Guard until he was honorably discharged in 1962.
James met the love of his life, Georgia Miller, in middle school as they grew up only blocks away from each other in Moline. They married on February 13, 1959 in Indiana and started their life together in Ankeny, Iowa where James began his life-long career at Deere & Company.
In 1966, he was transferred to Deere & Co Headquarters in Moline where he became the Parts Systems’ Manager. James led the team that established the first global computer system for Deere’s Parts’ Division in the late 1970s. This allowed Parts’ Departments at Deere dealerships to use computer systems for tracking and ordering parts, which was revolutionary at the time.
In 1992, James retired from Deere & Co after 34 years of service. He and Georgia moved to Fort Myers, Florida where he spent many happy years with friends, golfing and acting as the business manager for Georgia’s antique business. The two enjoyed traveling throughout the US and Europe to antique shows and markets for the business. They relocated to Lynnwood, WA in 2021.
James was a man of faith and lifelong Lutheran having served for many years on Church Councils and numerous committees at Trinity Lutheran Church in Moline, but he felt his greatest service was to have participated in delivering clothing to families in Appalachia.
Everyone who knew James knew his passion for the Chicago Cubs. The team broke his heart season after season until 2016 when they won the World Series which he considered one of the happiest days of his life. He was also a huge Iowa Hawkeyes fan and spent many weekends traveling to Iowa City for football games.
He is survived by his wife, Georgia, to whom he was married to for 64 years. He is also survived by two daughters Susan Kappler Blodgett (husband John Blodgett) and Patricia Kappler, three grandchildren James Blodgett (wife Sarah Blodgett) Jenna Blodgett, Matthew Hirsch (wife Summer) and two nieces Christy Bollman and Kelly Crouch.
Memories may be shared at esterdahl.com.