PHOENIX, Ariz. — James R. Kurtzhals, 68, Phoenix, Ariz., died Dec. 23, 2015, at his home, surrounded by family and friends.
Jim was born Oct. 30, 1947, in Omaha, and grew up in Coleridge, where he was raised by his adoptive parents, Vera and Clarence. Jim lived a large portion of his life in Arizona and Texas, but always treasured Alaska, where he met the love of his life, Kathy Lawlor. Jim and Kathy were married for almost 35 years. Jim was a proud Vietnam veteran and spent most of his career in construction and driving big rigs, which he both loved and hated. He cherished his football team from the top of his head to the Nebraska slippers on his feet.
Jim is survived by his spouse, Kathy; his son, Zackary, and wife, Stacy Kurtzhals; his two beloved grandchildren, Tyler and Cooper; and his brothers, Wayne and Terry.
Late in life Jim met his natural mother Dorothy Thomas (deceased) and his natural sisters, Cindy Dorhan (deceased) and Dee Dee Ratliff. He also leaves behind his extended Phoenix family, Rosemary, Ken, Karrie, Lee Ann, Sash, Maximo and Gabriela.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Vietnam Veterans of America, 8719 Colesville Rd. #100, Silver Spring, MD 20910.
Sympathy cards may be sent to Kathy Kurtzhals, 14254 N. 23rd St., Phoenix, AZ 85022.