Obituary: The Rev. James L. Friesner, 63, of Ludington.

December 16, 2020

Jim Friesner

The Reverend Dr. James L. Friesner, 63, of Ludington, passed away on Tuesday, December 15, 2020.

Jim was born on May 3, 1957 in Lancaster, Ohio to James L. Friesner and the late Bernadine Perez Friesner.  He graduated from Newark Senior High in Ohio in 1975, Otterbein College in 1994, Trinity Lutheran Seminary in 2000, and McCormick Seminary where he earned his doctorate in 2013.  Jim was ordained into the ministry of Word and Sacrament on May 7, 2000 at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Newark.  Pastor Jim was called to lead Lutheran and Episcopal congregations in Tustin, Ludington, Grand Rapids, and Manistee. The last parish he served was Good Shepherd Lutheran Church of Manistee.

On October 15, 1977 he married Norma Jean Cooperrider at Newark First Church of the Nazarene in Newark, Ohio.  To this union, they were blessed with the gift of two children:  daughter, Emily Bernadine and son, Carl James.

Those who remain to cherish his memory are his beloved Norma Jean; daughter, Emily (Joshua) Wellman of Jenison; son, Carl (Danielle) Friesner of Lusten Minn.; grandchildren, Hannah Nadine, Jarod Ryan, and Nora Clair Wellman of Jenison, and Ella Pearl Friesner of Lusten; father, James Friesner; twin brother, Timothy (Karen) Friesner of Newark; sister-in-law, Kitty (Steven) Friesner of Newark, Linda (Carl) Keaser and Mary (Roger) Ervin of Glenford, Ohio; three nieces; three nephews; and several cousin, most especially, Brenda (Ray) Hart of Lancaster, Ohio, Ronald (Darlene) Shore of Tiffin, Ohio, and Melissa (Gregg) Clement of Nelsonville, Ohio.

Jim was preceded in death by his mother, Bernadine, in 2004, and his brother, Steven, in 2008.

A funeral service will be held on Tuesday, December 22, 2020 at 1 p.m. at Good Shepherd Lutheran Church in Manistee, with Rev. Wayne B. Wheeler presiding. Visitation will begin at 11 a.m. at the church.

A private graveside service will be held at Cedar Hill Cemetery in Newark Ohio, where he will be laid to rest near his family.

In lieu of flowers, please consider a memorial contribution to the Manistee Senior Center.

Please share your fond memories and photos of The Reverend Dr. at 

Arrangements were entrusted to Oak Grove Funeral Home of Ludington.

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