James Douglas Crawford of Parrish, FL passed away on April 13, 2023. He is survived by his daughter, Lauren Crawford of Englewood, CO, wife, Kimberly (Kropff) of Parrish, FL, sister, Diana Webb (David) of Burnet, TX, brother, Robert Crawford of Frisco, TX, brother, Gary Crawford (Emily) of Englewood, FL, along with several nieces, nephews, cousins, and in-laws. He is preceded in death by his parents, Alton and Marian Crawford (Laughlin), and sister-in-law Roberta Crawford. Jimmy was the youngest of his siblings, born in Corpus Christi TX on October 3, 1959, on his mother’s 43rd birthday.
Jim’s family moved around during his early years, from Corpus Christi, TX, to Beaumont, TX, to Lubbock, TX, to Des Moines, IA, until finally settling in Raytown, MO where he would go on to finish his primary education. He was a varsity basketball player for the Raytown South Cardinals and was a starting player for the 1977 team when they won the Missouri State Men’s High School Basketball Championship. Jim was well loved in high school, his friends called him ‘Wally’, and he would often consider those times the best years of his life. He went on to attend college at Central Missouri State University in Warrensburg, MO where he was an active member in the Alpha Kappa Lambda fraternity. He was affectionately given the nickname ‘Big Bird’ because of his 6’5” frame. The name would stick with him for life. He would cherish those years in Warrensburg and kept in touch with so many fraternity brothers, often attending the annual float trip and frequently making the effort to visit those who lived out of state. He graduated CMSU in 1982 and moved back to Corpus Christi, TX to be closer to the family that lived in the area. He would eventually move back to Lee’s Summit, MO in 1985 where he and Peggy Crawford (Hill) would welcome his only child, daughter, Lauren Crawford on April 11, 1986. Jim would go on to live for several years in Scottsdale, AZ where, again, his warm nature and bright personality brought him lasting friendships and memories. He moved back to the Kansas City area in 1999, eventually settling in Lee’s Summit where he would meet his wife, Kimberly Crawford, in the fall of 2007. Jim and Kim wed in February of 2009 and enjoyed an active life in Kansas City, spending most weekends on their boat at Truman Lake. They constantly hosted friends and family at Truman Lake during the summer, hunted morel mushrooms in the spring, and caught fish all year round. They moved to Parrish, FL in 2014 and became the neighborhood hub for fish fries, crawfish boils, and other gatherings. Jim worked for Kärcher North America, formerly Windsor, for 32 years; he was an exemplary salesman who often overachieved goals and was revered as a coworker.
Jim was an avid outdoorsman, over the years he hunted deer, duck, elk, geese, pheasant, turkey, and morels. He particularly loved the annual South Dakota pheasant hunting trip where he was the ‘group cook.’ He also loved spending time in Maryville, MO, hunting for deer with longtime friends every fall. Jim’s greatest passion was fishing, he owned a boat from the time he was 19 until he passed, and he spent most of his free time fishing wherever the tides would take him. If you knew him, then you likely either fished with him, ate the fish he caught, or laughed alongside him at the fishing stories he told.
Jim’s family was the most important thing in his life, and he valued the time that he was able to spend with them. He loved visiting his family in Texas, visiting the family Ranch in Leakey, TX and fishing in the Gulf of Mexico were always highlights in the story of his life. His loving relationship with his siblings was a constant in his life, he always made the effort to visit, no matter how far away he lived. Family get togethers would consist of debates, fishing poles, bait, and a chance to reminisce and catch up on everyone’s lives. He loved his daughter, Lauren, and was always happy to brag to friends and family about how proud he was of her. His adoring wife Kim took care of him in his final years, and he loved having a partner to share similar hobbies and passions.
A Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, May 6th from 2-5pm at Llywelyn’s Pub, 301 SE Douglas St Lee’s Summit, MO. An additional gathering will be arranged in Florida with details forthcoming.
Fair Winds and Following Seas my good man, you will be dearly missed!
We dated for over a year and eventually got promised to each other. I became a little sister to his fraternity and nominated as their yearbook queen candidate. I have a great photo of us in the Homecoming parade and will post it soon. Jim drove me through the streets of Warrensburg
in a silver corvette.
The last time we spoke, he told me how proud and happy he was to be married to Kim. He said she was the love of his life! That made my heart happy.
Thank you Jim for showing me how to lighten up, have fun and the joys of getting up at 5am to go fishing.
Your happy face and playful spirit will live on.
Rudy “Rude-1” May
Jim was the salt of the earth type of guy. He will be terribly missed by those of us who were lucky enough to have crossed his path.
God bless you brother
Love you cousin!