James Herbert Grabowski

James Herbert Grabowski, 81, of Vermillion, South Dakota, passed away at the Royal C. Johnson Veterans Hospital in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, on Sunday, August 19, 2012.

Memorial service were held at First Baptist Church in Vermillion, South Dakota, at 1:00 p.m. on Saturday, August 25, 2012, with Pastor Elmer "Sandy" Aakre officiating.

James was born in Salamanca, New York, on November 23, 1930, to Leo and Marian (Pavlock) Grabowski. James was a proud Army veteran who served as a communications officer in Greenland, Okinawa, Japan, and Korea.

James met the love of his life, Delores Hillery, in 1972, they married in April 1994. They remained happily married until her passing in July 2007.

After leaving the service James worked as a car salesman, first in New York and then in California. In addition to his work, James was an avid fisherman and golfer.  He was a member of the Senior Golf League at The Bluffs, The local IOOF, VFW and Eagles.

He was the Founder of the Clay County Visually Impaired Support Group and served for 4 years as the Secretary of the HSBCA which is a National Organization based at the Hines Blind Center in Chicago, Ill. Dedicated to assisting and teaching Veterans affected with visual impairments and blindness, he volunteered his time and services to the Veterans Administration Hospital in Sioux Falls for the last 7 years.

James is survived by his step-children, Ronald (Cheri) Ahrendt of Vermillion, South Dakota, Teri (Rick) Heggestad of Pierre, South Dakota, and Jeanne (Alva) Davis of Sioux Falls, South Dakota; his sister, Anne Marie Jarvo of Lady Lake, Florida; 12 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Delores Grabowski; his parents, Leo and Marian Grabowski; his brothers, Robert Grabowski, and Eugene Grabowski; and his step-daughter, Christine M. (Ahrendt) Charles.

Services were entrusted to Kober Funeral Home of Vermillion, South Dakota.

Condolences may be posted online at www.koberfuneralhome.com.

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