James Syens, 75, Randolph

May 9, 2019

James “Jim” Henry Syens, 75, Randolph, died peacefully at his home Tuesday, May 7, 2019, surrounded by family.

Jim was born June 3, 1943, the only child of Henry and Rose (Benes) Syens. He was a 1961 graduate of Randolph High School and lived in Randolph his entire life. He was a member of the First Reformed Church in Randolph. On Feb. 1, 1964, Jim was united in marriage to Janice Alsum at the Second Christian Reformed Church in Randolph. Jim and Janice celebrated 55 years of marriage this past February when their family surprised them with a visit to Texas where they spent their winters the last 11 years.

Jim drove semi for Cupery and DeYoung Transit/Adams Transit for a number of years then retired from American Packaging Corporation on June 1, 2005, after 28 years. In his retirement, he enjoyed driving semi and dump truck for the Macheel family.

Jim enjoyed hunting, trapping, watching his Sunday races and reading his numerous western novels, but most of all he loved fishing. This June would have been his 40th year for the annual fishing trip to Canada with Janice, their grandchildren and son-in-law. These trips were cherished by all and his great-granddaughter is going on her first trip next month. Jim started a legacy that will continue for generations. He loved his grandchildren and had a nickname for each one.

Jim could fix anything and was the go-to person wherever it was needed. Anytime somebody needed something he was there with his toolbox ready to go. If a tool or screw was needed or your bike tires had to be pumped up, we just went to “Grandpa’s Garage” and he knew exactly where everything was. Jim was also known for his sense of humor and his many one-liners that either had us shaking our heads or laughing and one of those was “that guy could screw up a one car funeral.”

Jim is survived by his wife of 55 years, Janice; his daughters, Jana (Hugh) Roberts and JoAnn (Travis) Rose. He is also survived by five grandsons, Nick (Holly) Pfeffer, Corey Pfeffer, Jon (Brittney) Roberts, Kyle (Miranda Haima) Roberts and Jayden Rose; three granddaughters, Shanna (Mike) Phillips, Brianna (Alex) Seidel and Brooke (fiancé, Rex Alexander) Roberts; two great-granddaughters, Saige and Ivy Pfeffer with baby Seidel due in October; two brothers-in-law, Randy (Marlene) Alsum and Norm Wiersma; two sisters-in-law, Harlene Driesenga and Thelma (Ken) Rozema; cousins, nieces, nephews, other relatives and friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Rose Syens; his mother and father-in-law, Roy and Lena Alsum; three brothers-in-law, Roy Alsum, Ron Kok and Jay Driesenga; and one sister-in-law, Ardis Wiersma.

The visitation and funeral will be at First Reformed Church in Randolph on Monday, May 13, from 4 to 8 p.m. and again on Tuesday, May 14, from 10 a.m. until the time of the funeral service at 11 a.m. with the Rev. Al Pruis officiating. Burial will be at Randolph Cemetery.

Janice and her family express their sincerest gratitude to the Beaver Dam Hillside Hospice team, especially Debbie, Rita, Denise, Frankie and Megan for their loving care provided to Jim.

A memorial fund has been directed to Beaver Dam Hillside Hospice, 709 S. University Ave., Beaver Dam, 53916.

Randolph Community Funeral Home is assisting the family. Visit randolphfh.com.