James Eldon Hughes, age 63, of North Mankato, passed away as a result of an automobile
accident on Monday, December 10, 2012. Memorial Service will be held at 11:00 a.m., Saturday, December 15, 2012, at Centenary United Methodist Church on 501 South Second Street in Mankato. Private burial will follow. Visitation will be held from 4 - 8 p.m., Friday at NORTHVIEW - North Mankato Mortuary, 2060 Commerce Drive, North Mankato. Visitation continues one hour before the service at the church on Saturday. In lieu of flowers memorials may be given to the donor's choice or the James Hughes Memorial Scholarship Fund at St. Peter High School, 100 Lincoln Dr., St. Peter, MN 56082.
Jim was born in Mankato, MN, on October 22, 1949, to Eldon and June (Weimar) Hughes. He graduated from Mankato High School in 1967. While in high school he played in the Sonics Rock Band, where he played bass guitar. He enlisted in the U.S. Army Band, stationed in Kaiserslautern, Germany, where he attained the rank of Specialist after three years of service. He married Deborah Ewalt in 1971. He graduated from Mankato State College in 1974 with a Bachelor's in Music Education. Later, he earned a Master's of Music Performance in Bass Trombone and a Specialist Certificate in Education Administration from Mankato State University. He was a band teacher at St. Charles High School, principal of Granada-Huntley High School for 2 years and then Assistant Principal at St. Peter High School 1986-2008. After retirement, he continued as a substitute teacher and administrator in area schools. Since Jim's retirement he also worked for various lengths of time at Biolife, Mico, Onsite Energy, and most recently at Lor Ray Deli Mart. Jim continued to enjoy and participate in music his whole life as a member of the Minnesota Over Sixty Band, the Mankato Area Community Band, the Minnesota River Valley Wind Ensemble, occasionally with the Mankato Symphony, and the Tuba Band at Christmas time in the Madison East Mall. He also founded and directed the Minnesota River Valley Trombone Ensemble which preformed at area churches, Moondogs games, the Elko Speedway, and at the Lincoln Park area get together this last summer. On September 22, 2012, he was united in marriage to Darlene (Seys-Grams) Hughes at Centenary Methodist in Mankato. He was proud to be a Tae-Kwon-Do student and instructor and earned a second degree black belt. He was an avid reader and gardener.
Jim is survived by his wife, Darlene Hughes of North Mankato; his daughter, Amanda (Matthew) MacGregor and grandson, Callum of St. Cloud; his son, Ryan Hughes of Minneapolis; his mother, June Hughes of Mankato; his sister, Jan (Mark) Anderson of Tampa, FL and their daughters, Jill and Kim; his sister-in-law, Jodeen (Perry) Douglas and her son, Jackson Hughes of Fridley.
Jim was preceded in death by his father, Eldon; his sister, Joan Hanzelik; and his brother, Jack Hughes.