SALEM, Ohio (MyValleyTributes) – Robert G. James, of Salem, Ohio passed away Thursday, November 4, 2021, just two weeks after his 67th birthday.

He was born October 21, 1954, son of the late Robert, Sr. and Elizabeth (Steffel) James.

Robert was a formidable presence in life, never shying away from sharing his opinion or life experiences with others. He had an avid imagination and a different way of looking at the world.

He attended ETI Technical College and New Castle School of Trades.

A jack-of-all trades, Robert held approximately 47 different jobs in his lifetime including truck driving, factory work at Butech Bliss, maintenance at the Ron Joy Nursing Home and air conditioning repair at Sears. His most recent job of 12 years was as a custodian at the Salem Public Library.

Robert was known as a handyman, fixing his own things and often lending a helping hand to others (including his sons’ friends). He loved tractors and other machinery, planting corn and was always working on one project or another. Robert was particular about his diet, with his favorite dinner consisting of ham, red baked potatoes, fresh sweet corn, salad and Debbie’s homemade applesauce. He always delighted in an extra helping of vanilla ice cream. Robert also had a special soft spot for his cat, Garfield and dog-in-law, Oakley.

Besides his parents, a sister, Joni James, also preceded him in death.

Robert is survived by his wife, Debbie; son, Timothy and wife, Sara; son, William and close family friend, Ann Grimes.

Friends and family will be received from 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. Wednesday, November 10, 2021, at Stark Memorial. A memorial service will begin at 6:00 p.m.

Burial will be at Grandview Cemetery.

If unable to attend, you may show your support by joining our complimentary “Hugs from Home” program where your message will be attached to a balloon in the chapel to remind the family of your love and support at

To send condolences or flowers, visit

A television tribute will air Monday, November 8 at the following approximate times: 7:10 a.m. on FOX, 12:22 p.m. on WKBN, 5:08 p.m. on MyYTV and 7:27 p.m. on WYTV.