Cover photo for James Loftin's Obituary
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1924 James C. (Jim) Loftin 2024

James Loftin

June 4, 1924 — February 21, 2024

James C. Loftin affectionately known as Jim or Big Jim to family and friends. He was papaw to the grandkids.

On the morning of February 21, 2024, Jim passed away peacefully while being comforted by his wife Jewell, family, and hospice care, at his home in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. He was 99 years, 8 months, and 17 days old. Jim was a man of faith and loved to lead the song worship at the Church of Christ.

Funeral Service 2 PM, Tuesday, February 27, 2024 at Hart Funeral Home in Tahlequah, burial to follow at I.O.O.F. Hulbert Cemetery, with military honors. The family will receive friends on Monday, February 26, 2024 from 5 PM until 7 PM at Hart Funeral Home in Tahlequah.

James C. Loftin was born June 4, 1924, in the town of Hulbert, Oklahoma to Charley and Virgie (Scott) Loftin. He was the fourth of seven siblings. He attended Hulbert Public School through the sixth grade. Jim married Dortha Mitchell December 10, 1943, and they were blessed with two sons, James W. and Billy Leroy. After the passing of his wife Dortha, Jim married Jewell (Sands) Ryals, and they were blessed with nearly 40 wonderful years of marriage.

James C. Loftin was inducted into the Army on January 17, 1944, at Ft. Sill, OK. Private First Class Loftin served in the European Theatre Operations with the 1st Army, 23rd Infantry Regiment Company C participating in the campaigns of France, Belgium, Germany, the Bulge, Ardennes, and Czechoslovakia. He was decorated with the Bronze Star, Three Purple Hearts, WWII Victory Medal, EAME (European-African-Middle Eastern) Theater Service Medal, Good Conduct Medal, U.S. Army Combat Infantry Badge, and Presidential Unit Citation.

Jim grew up helping his dad in the family store, playing in Double Spring Creek with his brothers, and catching and breaking horses and mules. As a boy, growing up during the Great Depression, he learned survival skills. He began working for Ozark Nursery when he returned home from the army. It was there his passion for growing plants developed. He was known for being a skillful grafter. People would come to him over the years to learn the art of grafting and budding plants.

He moved his family to the Tulsa area where he continued to work in the nursery business. He also grew tomatoes and sold the produce to the local Safeway Grocery Store. Jim later moved to a farm in the Lost City Community and worked for Helmerich and Payne Inc. taking care of all the Landscaping at Utica Square.

Jim eventually went into the nursery business for himself and worked alongside his wife Jewell landscaping numerous yards in the Tahlequah area. He would eventually move to Tahlequah where he resided until his passing. Jim loved raising cattle, sheep, goats, chickens, turkeys, and numerous other animals during his life. Jim bought a brush-hog to attach to his tractor for his 97th birthday so he could keep the place mowed and looking nice. He continued to plow the garden every year and would supervise the planting and harvesting. He loved to watch things grow.

Jim will always be remembered as a fine man. He was honest, kind, had a strong work ethic, and loved growing plants and trees.

Jim was preceded in death by his wife Dortha Loftin, his brothers Tommie, Alfred (Pete), and Bob; sisters Lillian (infant girl), Betty, and Sue.

Jim is survived by his wife Jewell of the home; children and their spouses James W. (Yevonne) Loftin of Tahlequah, and Bill (Joyce) Loftin of Wagoner. Stepchildren Jackie Ryals of Moody, and James (Kim) Ryals of Tulsa. Grandchildren Jamie (Roger) Cole, Craig (Gayla) Loftin, Teresa (Shawn) Rhoads and Anita (Randy) Jones. 6 Great-grandchildren, 1 Great-greatgrandchild, 7 Step grandchildren, and 10 step great-grandchildren, Nieces, Nephews, and other extended family and friends.

Special Thanks to Ashley, Faye, Alex, Tiffany, and Good Shepherd Hospice Care.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James Loftin, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Public Viewing

Monday, February 26, 2024

5:00 - 7:00 pm

Hart Funeral Home

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Funeral Service

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

2:00 - 3:00 pm

Hart Funeral Home

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Tuesday, February 27, 2024

3:30 - 4:00 pm

Hulbert I.O.O.F. Cemetery

Tahlequah, OK 74464

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