James "Fish"/"Catfish" Fischer, 84, passed away peacefully on Friday, March 5, 2021 taking the Lord's hand with grace, dignity and an ornery but warm smile.
Many might say that he finally lost his incredibly courageous battle with cancer. We would beg to differ. He didn't allow cancer to run his life much less further steal his ability to live every day as he pleased, even with his last breathe. He did things his way on his own terms with grit and stubbornness, an unfiltered wit, resiliency and a rather unexpected sweetness.
Jim was born on March 28, 1936 in Sandusky, to the late John and Catherine (Federkiel) Fischer, graduating from Sandusky High School in 1956. During the Volunteer Draft, he joined the US Army, serving with the 42nd Field House as an x-ray technician. On November 17, 1962, he married his love, Connie (Shepler) moving to Perkins Township to raise his family. Over the years, he would become the daily news man calling his kids regularly with local weather and sports reports, known for sending unexpected care packages and the random "I gotcha somethin'...". He cherished his family.
Jim had a passion for his community. He was a volunteer fireman for the Perkins Fire Department and one of the first few paid firemen for Perkins Township, serving the township for many years. There was once a day when the Perkins Township Trustees referenced him as the "Mayor of Strub Road" at township meetings where Jim often made it a point to make sure that the neighborhood was taken care of. As well, it wasn't uncommon to see him making his rounds down the street making sure everyone had an American Flag to put up. A true union man and supporter of "Buy American", Jim retired from Ford Motor Company after 30+ years.
Jim was also generous with his time, helping collect donations and whatnot for the Firemen's Ball back in the day, donations for Toys for Tots, selling raffle tickets for different organizations, one of his favorite events being the Sandusky Bay Chapter of Ducks Unlimited Banquet selling tickets on bottles. Jim was also a member of the American Legion Post 83, the Fraternal Order of Eagles and the VFW.
He was a staunch and avid sports fan ~ Nascar, the Cleveland Indians, the Cleveland Browns, the Cavs and of course Ohio State. He was also an avid fisherman and hunter and loved the outdoors. He thoroughly enjoyed planting a great garden, making sure the birds and squirrels were well fed and housed, scattering flower seeds in random places "just because", and perfecting his lawn. Family reunions and the gathering of family and friends was so important to him, and (of course) a good game of horseshoes. Oh ~ should you ever come across a quarter with red nail polish on it, I assure you that at one point that quarter was part of a poker game with Jim. He always painted his quarters so that he knew who took all of his money.
Jim is survived by his loving wife of 58 years Connie (Shepler), his daughter Sherri (Shawn) Fischer-Sinnaeve of Sandusky, his son Don Fischer of Ft. Lauderdale, a sister Susan (Bill) Patterson of Sandusky, brothers Jack Fischer of Castalia and Ted Fischer in Texas, his best buddies Ike and Blue, a slew of nieces and nephews and even more friends.
He was preceded in death by his parents John and Catherine Fischer, his in-laws Delos and Helen Shepler, sisters and brother-in-laws Virginia and Jack Sherwood, Eileen and Herb Lavey, MaryAnn and Gene Taylor, Christine and Kenny Berkey, and sister-in-law Tony Fischer.
Visitation will be held on Friday afternoon March 12, 2021 from 4-7 p.m. at David F. Koch Funeral and Cremation Services, 520 Columbus Ave., Sandusky. Funeral Services will be held on Saturday at 11 a.m. at the funeral home. Burial will be in Meadow Green Memorial Park, Huron, Ohio. Due to the coronavirus health concerns, wearing of masks and social spacing will be recommended. If you’re uneasy about attending, please leave a message to the family on the website. Memories or words of comfort can be shared with Jim's family at davidfkoch.com.
Those wishing to contribute to Jim's memory are encouraged to make memorial contributions in his name to the Perkins Township Fire Department (3003 Campbell Street, Sandusky, OH 44870), to the family for a memorial park bench to be placed in a public place (Erie Community Federal Credit Union, c/o Jim Fischer Bench Fund, 1109 East Strub Road, Sandusky, OH 44870), or Stein Hospice Service, Inc. (1200 Sycamore Line, Sandusky, OH 44870). In lieu of flowers the family is suggesting bird houses such that they can be placed so that more people may enjoy something that Jim enjoyed, giving back to nature in some small way.
The family would like to extend a sincere thank you to the staff of the North Coast Cancer Center/Cleveland Clinic. Your kindness, selflessness, patience and compassion working with Fish was immeasurable and so appreciated. There are not enough words to express our humble gratitude. Thank you to the staff of Stein Hospice Services, Inc. as well. What you do for families is a true gift.
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