James Faris Brubeck


James Faris Brubeck, 84, of Palmetto, FL, passed away at 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, December 3, 2016. Jim was the youngest child of Harry A. and Iva Lopossa Brubeck, and grew up on a farm outside Taylorville, Illinois. He was an avid Boy Scout, earning Order of the Arrow and Eagle Scout, and serving as Scout Master for many years in Normal, IL.


Jim met the love of his life, Barbara Ann Hughes, while they were attending Eastern Illinois University, and they married on March 7, 1952. Jim earned his master’s degree at Ball State University, and did doctoral work at Colorado State College in Greeley. He taught in Muncie, Indiana; Litchfield, Illinois; and at University High School in Normal before joining the faculty at Illinois State University in 1957. As a professor, Jim taught sales, business, and marketing courses, and supervised many students at internships in local businesses. Jim used his sales expertise working at Montgomery Wards, J.C. Penney’s, and Johnny Martin Chevrolet during their years in Normal.


Jim reveled in family gatherings, always accompanied by Barb’s great cooking. Disney World was a special place for the family, and long before any tour guidebooks listed tips, Jim had already figured out the best route to take to avoid the huge crowds in the park.


He loved camping, and took the family on many trips. He and Barb built a KOA campground in rural Carlock in 1971, which they operated for 13 years. Together, they won many awards for Excellence from KOA, and for Sales Leadership from Fleetwood RV. He continued to sell RV’s after retirement.


The entertainer in Jim loved music – especially ballroom dancing with Barb. He played trombone, enjoyed singing, and in recent years emceed dances at several parks near their home in Florida.


Jim was a lifelong Methodist, and a member of First United Methodist Church in Normal.


He is survived by his wife Barbara; children Becky (Thomas) Nicol, Denise (Barry) Mears, Teresa (Mike) Payne, Harry (Sheri) Brubeck, Brenda (Dennie) Williams, David (Cornelia) Brubeck; grandchildren Bonnie (Andrew Rizzo) Benton, James (Jenni Sisson) Benton, Aubrey Benton, Tim Leonard, Troy (Jean) Leonard, Brett Leskovisek, Tom (Daiana) Brubeck, Rachel Brubeck, Chris Williams, Adam Williams, Cayman Brubeck, and Adrian Brubeck; and great-grandchildren Brittany Ann Marie Symons, Frankie Symons, Haley Grace Leonard, James David Leonard, and Cameron Benton Rizzo. He was preceded in death by his parents, and this year by his sisters, Jean Ellis and Harriet White.


Visitation will be held from 11a.m. – 1p.m. on Monday, December 12, at Taylorville First United Methodist Church. The funeral service will follow at 1 p.m. at the church and will be officiated by Rev. Becky Nicol, with interment at Grove City Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the First United Methodist Church of Normal, Illinois. McClure Funeral Home and Cremation Services in Taylorville is assisting the family with arrangements. Condolences to the family, or memories of Jim, may be left online at

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