James E. “Jim” Gamblian, 70, of Ottawa, passed away peacefully at his home on Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019, surrounded by his family.

Memorial graveside service will be 2 p.m. Monday, Jan. 6, 2020, at Janesville Cemetery, Hamilton, Kansas, with military honors by the United States Navy Honor Guard. Family will meet with friends from 3-4 p.m. Sunday, Jan. 5, 2020, at Dengel & Son Mortuary. The family suggests memorial contributions to Midland Care Hospice c/o Dengel & Son Mortuary, 235 S. Hickory, Ottawa, Kansas 66067. Family and friends are encouraged to post their condolences and memories on James’ Tribute Wall at www.dengelmortuary.com

Jim was born Dec. 4, 1949, in Great Lakes, Illinois, the son of Harry “Gene” and Donna (Newlon) Gamblian. He grew up in Eureka, Kansas, moving to Oologah, Oklahoma, where he lived for eight years. In 1983, Jim moved to Ottawa where he made his home until his death. He graduated from Eureka High School with the class of 1967.

Jim served in the United States Navy during Vietnam from January 1969 to October 1972 in the Mine Division 113. He transferred to the Naval Reserve serving from October 1972 to January 1975.

Jim was united in marriage to Debera Kay “Debbie” Sherman April 18, 1969, in Eureka, Kansas. She preceded him in death on March 19, 2019.

He was also preceded in death by his parents and sister, Jan Gilham.

Survivors include two children, Benjamin James Gamblian, of Leoti; Angela Kay Huske, of Ottawa; brother, Joe Gamblian of Eureka; two granddaughters, Kaylee Huske, of University of Kansas; Alexis Huske, of Ottawa; and three nieces and one nephew.

Jim was employed with Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad from 1973 to 2006 as a signalman, maintainer and foreman, retiring in 2006. He was a member of the Brotherhood of Railroad Signalmen.

Jim loved working at the railroad. He was an avid bow hunter and fisherman, collected wood planes and knives. Above all, Jim loved spending time with his family and friends. He could always be found tinkering in his woodshop.