James was born June 11, 1940 in Chicago, Illinois. When he was eight years old his parents moved to Hartford to enjoy the quiet country life. James spent the rest of his childhood growing up in Hartford, graduating from Hartford High School where he enjoyed being a part of the baseball team. After high school James worked for a cement company until he proudly enlisted in the United States Army. James returned home after serving his country and went to work at Ausco Products first as a time keeper and then in receiving until he retired. James continued his love for playing baseball by participating on Ausco's baseball team. Outside of work James enjoyed gardening, mowing his lawn, hunting, cheering on the Chicago Cubs and Bears, and spending time with family and friends.
James’ loving family includes: his wife of 47 years Marilyn (McGee) Pleyer; three children Phillip (Kimberly) McGee of White Lake, Michigan, Joseph (Janice) Pleyer of Sun City, AZ, and Candyce Buysse of Granger, IN; nine grandchildren; seven siblings Wayne (Linda) Pleyer of Lawrence, Kathy (Bob) Sinclair of Hartford, Christine Lawson of Watervliet, Diane Pleyer of Watervliet, Bruce Pleyer of Hartford, Darlene (Al) Giganti of Watervliet, and Paul Pleyer of Hartford; a sister-in-law Judy Pleyer of Lowell, IN; a brother-in-law Jerry Tanner of Hartford; and many nieces and nephews.
James died Friday, January 12, at Lakeland Hospital in Watervliet. His parents Joseph and Anna (Pradon) Pleyer, a brother Ron Pleyer, and a sister Joan Tanner precede James in death. Funeral services will be celebrated Saturday, January 20, at 11:00 AM at Salem Lutheran Church in Coloma, a luncheon will follow immediately and burial will be private at Fairview Memorial Cemetery.