James "Harvey" Stapleton, 62, of Kirklin, passed away while surrounded by his loving family, on Friday afternoon, March 10, 2017, at Franciscan St. Elizabeth Hospital in Lafayette.
Born July 19, 1954, in Lee County, Va., he was a son of the now late Leroy and Violet Ruth (Justus) Stapleton.
Harvey was a bus driver for the Zionsville Community School Corp. and also worked in the maintenance department.
He was good with his hands; he enjoyed working on lawn mowers. When he wasn't out tinkering in the garage, you could usually find him at the Corey Creek Flea Market selling his junk. If the weather was cooperating and he could find the time, he liked to go hunting and fishing.
A 1974 graduate of Sheridan High School, Harvey loved Blackhawk Football. For as many years as most people can remember, he was a fixture on the practice field and on the sidelines. He loved being around the activity, he loved being around the kids, and he loved being around Coach Wright.
Harvey started playing football his junior year in high school, 1973, and things were never quite the same afterwards. That season started a 43-year-long love affair with Blackhawk Football.
When Harvey's health started to fail, he spent quite a bit of time in and out of the hospital, and that meant missing more and more games. On one such occasion, he got discharged from the hospital early enough to go see his Blackhawks play one more time. That game happened to be when Bud Wright chalked up his 400th win. As happy as the followers of Blackhawk football were for that night to finally come, Harvey was probably the happiest. Getting to be there in person to watch his favorite team, led by his friend of many years, reach that milestone was wonderful.
The only thing that made him happier than Blackhawk Football was his family. Spending time with his girls and his grandkids meant the world to him.
Harvey is survived by his two daughters, Jessica Ann Stapleton and Jennifer Dawn Stapleton, both of Kirklin; two grandchildren, Levi Alexander Dittman and Jase Ryan Starr; three brothers, Charlie Stapleton (Sue) of Sheridan, Wayne Stapleton (Linda) of Hortonville and Bobby Stapleton of Arcadia; one sister, Nancy Stapleton of Lebanon; and his four-legged best friends, Maggie and Scooter. Those two went everywhere with Harvey.
He was preceded in death by his parents; two brothers, Bill and Danny Stapleton; and by his wife, Elizabeth Ann "Beth" (Rector) Stapleton in 2007.
A celebration of life will be held at 2 p.m. Saturday, April 1, at the Sheridan Church of God, 707 W. 2nd St., Sheridan; with visitation following the service until 5 p.m. Pastor Chris Brooks will be officiating.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be presented to the Sheridan Football Program.
Published on March 27, 2017