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Welcome to the memorial page for

James Ambrose Kemper

June 27, 1936 ~ April 8, 2017 (age 80)

Verona – James A. Kemper, age 80, passed away at home on Saturday, April 8, 2017, surrounded by family.  He was born in Cedar Rapids, IA on June 27, 1936, the son of Alvin J. and Marguerite L. (Ambrose) Kemper.  Jim enlisted in the U.S. Air Force in 1956, and served in Vietnam.  He retired from service in 1976, and went on to work at Graber Industries and the U.S. Postal service.   Jim married his high school sweetheart, Joyce M. Hilsman in Waterloo, IA on October 27, 1956, and just celebrated their 60th wedding anniversary last October.   Together they raised 5 boys, Tony, Mike, Dave, Chris and Erik. 

Jim’s home improvement projects were his favorite passion.  In his younger years, he loved to fish, hunt and spend time at the family cabin in Northern Wisconsin.  He also enjoyed his time at the casino.

Jim is survived by his wife, Joyce; sons, Anthony J. Kemper of Edwardsville, IL, Michael A. (Jill) Kemper of St. Paul, MN, David J. Kemper of Fall River, WI, Christopher J. (Moryah) Kemper of Verona, WI and Erik P. (Terry) Kemper of Franklin, WI; 10 grandchildren, Ryan A. (Megan) Kemper of St. Louis, MO, Craig M. (Amanda) Kemper of Edwardsville, IL, Kimberly L. Kemper of Dodgeville, WI, Andrea J. Kemper of Fall River, WI, Miranda M. Kemper of Verona, WI, James C. Kemper of Verona, WI, Charli J. Kemper of Fall River, WI, Erin T. Kemper of Franklin, WI, Meghan S. Kemper of Franklin, WI and Deacon G. Kemper of Verona, WI; 2 great grandchildren, Lillian and Temperance Kemper of Edwardsville, IL; and 2 sisters, Judy E. Debe of Waterloo, IA and Jackie M. (Garry) Furlong of Cedar Falls, IA.

He is preceded in death by his parents and his sister, Karen A. Surrell.

A Memorial Service will be held at 2 p.m. on Friday, April 14, 2017 at RYAN FUNERAL HOME, 220 Enterprise Drive, Verona.  Visitation will be held from 1 p.m. until the time of service.

Jim’s family would like to thank St. Mary’s Care Center and Heartland Hospice for their kindness and patience in his last months.

Memorials may be written to St. Mary’s Care Center, Heartland Hospice or the Disabled American Veterans Organization.

To view and sign this guestbook, please visit

Charitable donations may be made to:

St. Mary's Care Center
3401 Maple Grove Drive, Madison WI 53719
Tel: 1-608-845-1000

Heartland Hospice
2810 Crossroad Drive Ste 1300, Madison WI 53718
Tel: 1-608-819-0033

Disabled American Veterans
PO Box 14301, Cincinnati OH 45250
Tel: 1-877-647-8387

 Service Information

April 14, 2017

1:00 PM to 2:00 PM
Ryan Funeral Home – Verona Chapel
220 S. Enterprise Drive
Verona, WI 53593

Funeral Service
April 14, 2017

2:00 PM
Ryan Funeral Home – Verona Chapel
220 S. Enterprise Drive
Verona, WI 53593

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