Easton James M. "Jiggs" Loonan, age 82, of Easton, died Saturday, Feb. 8, 2014, at his home in Easton.
Mass of Christian Burial was held Feb. 11, 2014, at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church in Easton. The Rev. Eugene Stenzel officiated and interment was in Our Lady of Mount Carmel Cemetery, Barber Township, Faribault County. Military honors were accorded by the Easton American Legion Post #569. Bruss-Heitner Funeral Home in Wells was in charge of arrangements.
James M. Loonan was born Dec. 15, 1931, to Thomas W. Loonan and Anna (McCann) Loonan in Easton. He attended Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic School in Easton and graduated from Delavan High School in 1949. He played baseball in the Southern Mini League while attending St. John's University, Collegeville. He graduated with a business degree from St. John's in 1953. In 1953, he signed with the New York Yankees, shortly thereafter he was drafted into the U.S. Army serving in Germany. Upon an honorable discharge, he returned to the U.S. and resumed his baseball career with the Yankees organization. He spent four years at night law school, while working at Mutual Service Insurance Company where he met his future wife, Pat Shepard. James and Pat were married June 21, 1958. He graduated from William Mitchell?College of Law with a law degree in 1959. They moved to Easton where he joined his dad in banking at the State Bank of Easton. James also joined the law firm of Frundt and Hibbs in Blue Earth. He continued playing baseball, softball, racquetball, golf, and any competitive sport that came his way, and he enjoyed betting on games with his buddies if they dared. He really enjoyed meeting for coffee every day with "the guys". He coached Jr. High sports at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic School for over twenty years making many young friendships that lasted forever. James spent many enjoyable years lovingly developing a wildlife habitat at his Robinson Slew north of Easton. He served on the Wells-Easton School Board, Easton City Council, Easton Fire Department, and was a Trustee at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Catholic Church. He was truly devoted to the Easton Community and its people. May God have mercy on his soul and may he rest in peace with God and all the saints and angels in heaven.
James is survived by his wife, Pat Loonan; five children: Tim (Dorothy) Loonan, of Waseca, Barbara Felber, of Chanhassen, Bob (Denise) Loonan, of Shakopee, Tom (Melisse) Loonan, of Easton, and Mary Pat (Anthony) Parker, of Chandler, Ariz.; 12 grandchildren; three step-grandchildren; brother, Thomas W. Loonan, Jr., of Sioux Falls, S.D.; brother-in-law, Joe Russell, of Minneapolis; and neighbor kids, Lanny and Teri Johnson, of Easton.
He was preceded in death by his parents; sisters, Carola Russel and Evelyn Routier; brother, Russell Loonan; sisters-in-law, Terese Loonan and Jean Loonan; and brother-in-law, Bill Routier.
Please see www.brussheitner.com to leave online condolences.