James “Jim” Arnold Strong, 81 of Indianapolis, Indiana, passed away Tuesday, November 7, 2023.
A gathering of family and friends will be held on Thursday, November 16, 2023, from 3:30pm to 5:30pm with a military salute at 4:30pm, at Indiana Funeral Care, 8151 Allisonville Road, Indianapolis, Indiana, 46250.
Jim was born on September 29, 1942, in Allais, Kentucky, to James and Pauline (Bryant) Strong. When he was 10, his parents moved the family from Allais to Indianapolis in the hopes of making a better life and to keep their sons from growing up to work the coal mines like their father did. It was a tough transition for young Jim making his way in the new, big city, but he persevered.
At 15, he began sweeping floors for Jacobson Patternworks, working there through school, graduating in 1960 from Arsenal Technical High School.
While in high school, he met Phyllis on a blind date and it was the beginning of a wonderful 60+ year journey. They were married on January 25, 1964, and had three daughters, Wendy, Tina and Lori. Jim was certainly outnumbered when it came to sharing a home with the girls, but he took it in stride.
He joined the Army on February 28, 1964, and was stationed in Fort Knox, Kentucky, serving a total of 5 years active and reserve duty. He was trained as a rifle sharpshooter and served as a cook and a supply sergeant.
Continuing his career as a Patternmaker, he worked at Jacobson Patternworks his entire career, retiring in 2011.
An avid car enthusiast, Jim raced cars in his younger days as an amateur at Indianapolis Raceway Park. He could take an entire car apart and put it back together. He was a Colts fan and season ticketholder. He loved the outdoors, from hunting and fishing in his younger years, to simply taking a walk in the woods or admiring the birds and squirrels from the porch or occasional deer wandering through the back yard.
More than anything Jim loved his family, and we so loved him. He was our go-to guy and a calming force of nature for all of us. He was always fixing or tinkering with something, often letting his lunch or dinner get cold in the process.
He was preceded in death by his mother Pauline and father James, as well as his brother Walter.
He is survived by his loving wife, Phyllis and his 3 daughters, Wendy, Tina and Lori, as well as sisters Wanda Armstrong of Seminole, Florida, and Judy Kizzee of Indianapolis, brother Allen Strong of Speedway, 5 grandchildren, 6 great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.