Jimmie Lewis Klees

Published 1:27 pm Friday, September 9, 2022

Dec. 7, 1950-Aug. 4, 2022


Jimmie Lewis Klees, 71, of Dowagiac passed away on Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, in Stevensville, MI.

Jimmie was born on Dec. 7, 1950, to Kenneth, Sr., and Janette (Rotzien) Klees in Niles, MI. He graduated from Dowagiac High School in 1969. Jimmie has two daughters, Jennifer and Andrea and he was married to Joni Klees for many years. Jimmie was a truck driver for nearly 50 years and retired in 2020 from A&R Logistics Company. He received the million-mile ring just before he retired. 

He was an avid deer hunter, fisherman, mushroom hunter, Deer Camp “board member,” and master gardener. He loved watching sports and was a “die-hard” Michigan fan, March Madness basketball fan, and Detroit Tigers fan. He also loved fast cars and hot rods, playing horseshoes, drinking beer, and spending time with family and friends. He loved music, especially from the ’60s, ’70s, and ’80s. He would turn it up loud enough to sing(yell) the lyrics (out loud) with anyone who would listen and sing along. He was named “Daddio of the Patio” by his girls for his ultimate grilling techniques on his beloved Weber grill and he was, by far, THE BEST of the BEST grill master around! He often traveled down South to spend time with his girls and spent many weekends in the Carolinas making memories with his family. He also spent much of his time in his “Tiki Bar” entertaining the many lifelong friends and family who would stop by for a visit. He and his wife Joni spent most summers in the yard and garden tending to all the beautiful vegetables, fruits, and flowers that they would plant and harvest for canning and sharing with loved ones.

 It was on Aug. 4, 2022, at approx. 2 p.m., in the afternoon, that he went home to be with the Lord. The timing was a bit unexpected for all of us, but it was God’s plan to take him home that day. He had been diagnosed with a terminal pulmonary (lung) disease last year and was hospitalized in February and then again in March which is when we decided to take him home with hospice. For the next 4 months, his health continued to decline, and he was taken to Hanson (Hospice) House on the evening of Aug. 3, which is where he passed away the following day. 

He is survived by his wife, Joni Klees of Dowagiac; grandkids, Nate, Aaron & Chasity; his daughter, Jennifer (Mark) Salmon of Saline, MI, and grandkids, Erika, Brody, Madilynne & Caden; daughter, Andrea (Brandon) Reagan of Charleston, SC; grandkids Colby, Preston & Stratton, and many nieces & nephews Jimmie was preceded in death by his parents Kenneth, Sr. and Janette Klees, Sister, Marianne Oldham; Brother, Kenny Klees.

There will be a Celebration of Life in honor of Jimmie for family and close friends at the Local Moose Lodge 933 in Dowagiac, MI on Saturday, Oct. 15, 2022, at 3 p.m. Those wishing to leave a condolence may do so at www.starks-menchinger.com