Cover photo for James B. Stevens's Obituary
James B. Stevens Profile Photo

James B. Stevens

December 6, 1946 — May 20, 2022

James B. Stevens

STEVENS, James B., age 75 of Dayton passed away on Friday, May 20, 2022. He was born in San Francisco, CA to the late Elouise Thompson Garrett. James is preceded in death by his wife, Kathleen (Connell) son, Douglas Stevens, brothers-in-law-law Jerald and James Connell, and sister-in-law Cassandra Connell . He is survived by his brother, Randy (Carol) Garrett, daughter, Kimberly (Tony) Wallace, daughter-in-law, Christy Stevens; grandchildren, Autumn, Colin, Logan and Zoe Stevens, Brooke and Sarah Wallace, and two step grandchildren, Brittany and Kyle Wallace as well as his sister-in-law, Sandra Connell and numerous nieces and nephews.

He grew up in Dayton, Ohio and was a graduate of Belmont High School, and began his collegiate studies at the University of Dayton, where he attended alongside his future bride, Kathleen. Shortly thereafter, he married her, had their first child and moved to Indiana, and later Missouri as they expanded their family.

Jim wore many hats throughout his life. He was a member of Box 21 in Dayton, Ohio. After leaving Dayton, he went on to become one of the first paramedics in the United States and later a firefighter/paramedic. He taught CPR and first aid for the American Red Cross, and was an EMT instructor at St. Louis Community College . He also worked for numerous hazardous material and rescue operations.

He authored multiple articles for Firehouse Magazine and wrote sections of textbooks used by EMT students.

He helped open the National Fire Academy in 1980 in the hazardous material class, and was the first class to graduate.

His personality was intellectual in nature and he had an uncanny ability to navigate any city. He did not know a stranger. Upon meeting anyone, he would quickly tell them a joke or story and find a way to connect with them on a variety of subjects. If needed, he also would have given them the shirt off his back, and would never pass a stranded motorist, or person he felt was needing his help in any way.

In addition to helping someone stranded on the road, he was known to rescue people in times of tragedy. Throughout his life, he tirelessly aided in rescue and retrieval of five airplane crashes in multiple states and in the tragic collapse of the Silver Bridge in Point Pleasant, Ohio.

Jim’s hobbies included, cooking, camping, bicycling, photography and rappelling. He was an award winning photographer at the county fair and some of his photos have been displayed in various buildings throughout the Dayton area.

His favorite hobby throughout his life, however, was always helping or saving others. His family feels he continued to do that the best he could in life after his career as a firefighter ended when a roof collapsed upon him. Despite this, his heroic nature never ceased. His family feels it was still the driving force behind all he did later in this life. They would also say that if there is an afterlife, he has already found a way to help someone.

Friends and family may visit Monday, June 6th from 10:00 am-11:15 am at Westbrock Funeral Home, 1712 Wayne Ave, Dayton. Funeral service will be from 11:15 am-11:30 am also at the funeral home. Jim will then be laid to rest in Calvary Cemetery.
To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James B. Stevens, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Visitation

Monday, June 6, 2022

10:00 - 11:15 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Funeral Service

Monday, June 6, 2022

11:15 - 11:30 am (Eastern time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Guestbook

Visits: 2

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree