POLAND, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – James Earl Ramsey, Sr., 95, formerly of Duncan Drive, passed away Tuesday, January 31, 2023, at Maplecrest Nursing Home in Struthers, surrounded by his loving family.

Jim was born November 11, 1927, in Youngstown, a son of the late Lorraine Ramsey and grandson of the late Margaret Ramsey, who later adopted and raised him.

A proud Boardman Spartan, Jim graduated from Boardman High School in 1945.

After serving in the United States Army as a member of the 10th Constabulary Regimental Band, Jim graduated from Youngstown College in 1952 with a Bachelor of Science degree in music education from the Dana School of Music. He furthered his educational growth by earning his Master’s Degree in Music Education from Westminster College.

Jim married Elma Pekkanen, on October 12, 1949 and she passed away on April 24, 2012.

Jim was a devoted instrumental music teacher for Youngstown City Schools for over 35 years, retiring in 1987. For over 60 years, he was also blessed to have taught hundreds of students private music lessons.

As an active member of the community, Jim was a member of Old North Church in Canfield, the Canfield Community Band, Gideons International, the Jewish-Christian Dialogue and also participated in the Conversations Salon at Poland Library. Jim was a lifelong learner, who attended College Over-Sixty at Youngstown State University, accumulating 185 non-credit hours.

Jim will be missed by his two children, James E. (Giovanna) Ramsey, Jr. and Janet L. Bish, both of Poland, Ohio; eight grandchildren, Jonathan (Chelsea) Bish of Victoria, BC, Canada, James (Esther) Ramsey III of Norwood, Missouri, Jeffrey (Gabrielle) Ramsey of San Diego, California, Jen Bish (Grant Via) of Fort Mill, South Carolina, Lauren (Judah) Rodriguez of Poland, Ohio, Adrienne Bish (Patrick Majernik) of Boardman, Ohio, Jordan (Marian) Ramsey of San Diego, California and Grant (Natalie) Ramsey of San Diego, California; 15 great-grandchildren, James IV, Charles, Robert, William, Gian, Alina, Vivian, Cara, Kate, Arlo, Jack, Luciana, Benjamin, Jaxson and Brodhi; a sister, Margaret (Pat) Martucci of Austintown, Ohio; two sisters-in-law, Jan Farrah of Louisville, Ohio and Elsa Metting of Spokane Valley, Washington, as well as, many nieces and nephews.

Jim was preceded in death by his grandmother, Margaret; mother, Lorraine; his wife, Elma Ramsey; a brother, Ivan R. Farrah and many brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law.

Family and friends may call on Friday, February 24, 2023, from 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. at Old North Church, 7105 Herbert Road in Canfield. A memorial service celebrating Jim’s life will follow at 4:00 p.m. at the church, with Pastor Rick Enlow, officiating.

A private burial will take place at Lake Park Cemetery in Youngstown.

In lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to the Old North Church Benevolent Fund, Rescue Mission of Mahoning Valley, 1300 Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard, Youngstown, OH 44510 or savethemusic.org.

Arrangements are being handled by Cunningham-Becker Funeral Home, 270 North Main Street in Poland.

A television tribute will air Sunday, February 12, at the following approximate times: 8:58 a.m. on FOX and 9:58 p.m. on MyYTV. Video will be posted here the day of airing.