Flag Eagle

James "Jim" Ward Willkomm

July 11, 1928 ~ October 23, 2021 (age 93)


Lt. Colonel James "Jim" Willkomm passed away peacefully at his home on Saturday, October 23, 2021 at the age of ninety-three.  

A memorial service will be held on Wednesday, November 10, 2021, at 11:00 A.M. in the chapel of Albritton Funeral Directors with Rev. Joseph Carter and Rev. Roger Mays officiating.  Lt. Col. Willkomm was retired from the United States Marine Corps and full military honors will be rendered at Mt. Calvary United Methodist Church Cemetery after the service.  The family will receive friends prior to the service from 10:00 A.M. to 10:45 A.M. at the funeral home.

He was born on July 11, 1928, to the late Minerva and Edward Willkomm in Wickliffe, Ohio. Along with his parents, he was preceded in death by his two daughters, Pamela Henson and Stephanie Redden.  

 At a very young age he moved to Detroit, Michigan where he lived until graduating from McKenzie High School in June 1946.  In July 1946, he enlisted in the United States Marine Corps as a Private.  He advanced through the ranks and was promoted to Gunnery Sergeant (E-6) in 1951.  In February of 1955 he was commissioned as a Second Lieutenant serving until, he retired as a Lieutenant Colonel in March 1972.  He served overseas during both the Korean and Vietnam conflicts.

Upon his retirement he moved to Fort Myers, Florida and worked for a residential home construction company eventually managing an ancillary manufacturing business owned by the company.  In 1987, he married Elaine Payne who was a native of Tifton and they relocated to Tifton in 1991.

In 1993, he was influenced by a neighbor, the Tifton Chief of Police, James A. Smith, Jim accepted a position as the Parking Enforcement Officer for the Tifton Police Department serving in that position until 2005.  He then assumed the duties of Administrative Assistant for the Chief of Police until 2016.

Along with his wife, he was a long-time member of Mount Calvary United Methodist Church serving on several positions of the Church Council.

Survivors are his wife Elaine Payne Willkomm of Tifton, son, Chad and Katie Shadle and, two grandchildren, Kyle and Courtney Shadle all of Ave Maria, Florida.

The family would like to give special thanks to Dr. Cameron Nixon, Dr. Johnny Stephens, the staff at Amedisys Home Health and Homestead Hospice for their compassionate care.

Flowers accepted or you may make donations to Mt. Calvary United Methodist Church Cemetery Fund, P.O. Box 1913, Tifton, Ga. 31793

Albritton Funeral Directors is in charge of the arrangements.


To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James "Jim" Ward Willkomm, please visit our floral store.


November 10, 2021

10:00 AM to 10:45 AM
Albritton Funeral Directors
1020 Tift Ave N
Tifton, GA 31794

Memorial Service
November 10, 2021

11:00 AM
Albritton Funeral Directors
1020 Tift Ave N
Tifton, GA 31794

Interment following the memorial service

Mt. Calvary United Methodist Church Cemetery
217 Upper TyTy Road
Tifton, ga 31793

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