James R. Lilley August 7, 1932—August 19, 2022
James (Jim) Lilley, age 90, of Canton, Michigan, passed away peacefully on August 19, 2022. Son of Howard Lilley (Ohio) and Leila Ouellette Lilley (Ontario). Devoted husband of Valentina “Mickey” Wilczak Lilley (Detroit). Ever-present dad of Jeffrey Lilley, Kirk Lilley (Katie Root Lilley), and Kristyn Lilley. Grandfather of Racine and Linden Lilley. Grandpaw of Diesel, Dingo, Lady Bug, Cobo, and Gooseberry.
Jim, a native of Dearborn, Michigan, graduated from Dearborn High School, and served 4 years in the United States Navy as an Aviation Electronics Technician, Third Class, flying missions for the U.S. Air Force — from California, to Pearl Harbor, to Japan. He never set foot on a Navy ship.
James attended junior college for two years and went on to work for the County of Wayne, for 39 years, in the Field Engineering Office.
He and Mickey moved from Dearborn Heights to their home in Canton where they lived for 49 years.
Jim’s retirement years were spent crisscrossing the United States with Mickey, visiting relatives and collecting antiques. He was a Lifetime Golden Member of the National Parks System, a Top Gun at the Western Wayne County Conservation Association, and a member of the Detroit Nomads Travel Club, traveling to Australia, Denmark, Norway, and other exotic locations.
A friend to many, Jim was a man who enjoyed living. He went about his day with a whistle on his lips, a spring in his step, and a smile for everyone he met.
Never one to sit around, Jim made the most of each day — rising early and packing as much into each day as possible. He lived by the mottos of “Daylights-A-Burning”, “Make Hay While The Sun Shines” and “Betcha I Can”.
Our Sweet Papa Bear will be deeply missed.
Visitation for Jim will be Thursday, August 25, from 2:00pm to 4:30pm at Schrader-Howell Funeral Home, 208 S. Main St., Plymouth, Michigan, 48170.
A memorial service will immediately follow the visitation at 4:30pm.