February 14, 1928 - April 29, 2023
James Godfrey Shull, Jr. – Jim Shull – died on April 29, 2023. He was born in Kansa City, MO, on February 14, 1928, to James G. and Lucile G. Shull who were from Lexington, Lafayette County, MO. He was a lifelong resident of the metropolitan area.
Jim and Gayle Lynn Day were married on May 5, 1950. She passed away in 2011. Survivors are his son, James C. Shull, and wife Nancy; granddaughter, Jennifer Shull; daughter, Nancy Lynn Bell, and husband John; brother, Richard G. Shull, and wife Barbara and family; sister-in-law, Joyce Anne (Day) Jenkins and husband Bob and family; brother-in-law, Michael R. O’Halloran and wife Gretchen and family; and cousins located near and far. He was predeceased by his children David W. Shull and Carolyn Shull.
He attended William Rockhill Nelson elementary school, Southwest High School (1945), and graduated from the Kansas City Missouri Junior College with an Associate Degree in Engineering (1947). He graduated from the University of Colorado at Boulder (1950) with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aeronautical Engineering. He belonged to the Sigma Chi Fraternity and was a life-loyal Sig.
Airplanes and aviation were fascinating to him early in life. He soloed in a J3 Piper Cub in 1949 at Boulder and earned his private pilot’s license. Numerous local and cross-country flights were logged but as a young husband and father it was put aside as an expensive hobby, but the fascination never ended.
A career in aviation was not to be. By an unusual set of circumstances, he had an opportunity to join L. G. Barcus and Sons, a heavy construction contractor, in January 1950 where he became a Vice President. In 1966 he joined Huxtable Hammond Co., an industrial and mechanical contractor, where he was Executive Vice President and General Manager. He founded what became J. G. Shull Co., a general contractor, which he owned and operated from 1978 until his retirement in 2003.
He belonged to the Cosmopolitan Club of Johnson County, the Engineers Club of Kansas City, the Salt and Pepper Club, and the Heart of America Chapter of Associated Builders and Contractors, all of which he served as President. He led the Colorado University local Alumni Chapter in the 1950s and was the 1972 Class Chairman of the Colorado Engineering Alumni Fund.
The Boy Scouts of America was formative to his life. He earned all ranks in the Cub Scout program and was an Eagle Scout at Troop 66 at Second Presbyterian Church in Kansas City. At Bartle Scout Camp from 1940 to 1947, he became a Hardway Warrior in The Tribe of Mic-O-Say. He served as Cubmaster (Pack 3192) and Scoutmaster (Troop 192) at Old Mission Methodist Church in Fairway. In 1969 he and Jug Winslow took 16 Scouts to the Philmont Scout Ranch near Cimarron, New Mexico for an eleven-day, 44-mile camping and hiking high adventure.
He was an outdoorsman and fished local and several Canadian waters, but by far his greatest enjoyment was hunting the marshes for ducks and the fields for upland game birds. He joined the Lucy Timber Duck Club in 1969 and served as President from the time of incorporation in 1974 until 2011. His hunting trips over the years took him to fifteen states and three Canadian provinces. His Model 12 and black Labrador retrievers, the greatest of which was Whitey, family and friends, and a patient wife made for good times.
He was a volunteer for Ducks Unlimited and served as Western Missouri Chapter President from 1971-72, and Missouri State Chairman from 1973–74. As Regional Vice President he worked with volunteers in Missouri, Iowa, and Illinois, and as Flyway Senior Vice President, Indiana and Ohio were added. He served on the Board of Directors of both Ducks Unlimited, Inc. and Ducks Unlimited Canada and was an Emeritus Director. A tribute dinner was held in 2003 recognizing his five decades of service. The proceeds were designated toward the Missouri Conservation Department’s development of the Settle’s Ford Conservation Area near Urich, MO. A cairn in the area recognizes the event.
He attended Sunday school at Second Presbyterian Church, joining in 1940, and was an Elder, and a lifelong member. He served two terms as a Deacon and five terms on the Session and chaired the Building and Grounds Committee and the Finance Committee.
A memorial service will be held at the Second Presbyterian Church located at 318 East 55th Street, Kansas City, MO 64113 at 2:00 PM on June 3rd. A reception in the parlor will follow.
Any memorial contributions are suggested to Ducks Unlimited One Waterfowl Way Memphis, TN 38120, or Second Presbyterian Church.
Friend ,Leneax ,Kansas
You were one of a kind and I loved our visits. Thank you for your kindness and graciousness. I hope the duck hunting with Whitey is fabulous. May your family be comforted by wonderful memories that you so lovingly helped to create.
Neighbor ,OVERLAND PARK ,Kansas
Jim and Gayle were wonderful neighbors who were both incredibly kind and patient with our 3 year old when we moved across the street from them in 1997. I enjoyed our many "driveway" discussions where we offered solutions to many of the world's less pressing problems. Jim's sunny, optimistic, and welcoming disposition will be missed.
Friend ,Monticeto ,California
I mourn the loss of my long time friend. He always had time for me and never failed to encourage me in the many endeavors we shared. I will miss him very much.