James Hafner, age 89, of Summerfield, FL, passed away with his family by his side on May 28, 2022.
Our husband, father, grandfather, and great grandfather was a kind man; a gentle man. He was happily married for 69 years. When it came to his children dad was not only into quality time, he was also into quantity time. He loved being with his children so much that our mom and he created a home that his children and their friends always wanted to be around. If you were fortunate to hang out at the Hafner home you know the loving and accepting place they made. Our mom and dad loved hosting the annual Hafner Christmas party where our dad always made raw Kibbi and grape leaves. Dad was a veteran of the Korean War. He was humble. Dad worked hard but understood that no man is self-made. He always marveled at his life and his many blessings. Dad was a devout Catholic and had the faith of a child. He simply believed. He was proud to work in Human Resources for the Chrysler Corporation for 32 years back when the big three were still the Big Three. He enjoyed playing softball and had a quick glove even when he was a rookie in an age 70 and older league. He loved playing catch with his son and his son loved playing catch with him. Dad was a fan of Michigan football. He was a long-time season ticket holder who could tailgate with the best of them. He thought Bo Schembechler should be Michigan’s only coach and Bob Ufer its only announcer. Dad was certain that in heaven Ernie Harwell would do the play by play for the Tigers. And right now Ernie is saying “A man from Saline, Michigan caught that ball.”
Jim is survived by the love of his life, Gloria; his daughter, Kim (Hafner) Essenmacher and her husband Dave; his daughter Dawn Hafner Martin and her husband Bill; his son, Tim Hafner and his wife Mary; his daughter Beth (Hafner) Perry and her husband Mike; ten grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.
A celebration of a great life will take place at Weber’s in Ann Arbor, Michigan on Saturday, August 13, from noon to 3:00pm. The family would like to thank the wonderful staff at Brandley Hospice. In lieu of flowers, consider praying a rosary in memory of Jim; send a contribution to Bishop Grady Ministries at https://www.bishopgradyvillas.org/donate; or make a contribution to Hospice of Marion County at www.hospiceofmarion.com, or your local hospice.