James F. Belwood, Age :99

Feb 09,1919---Apr 23,2018

On the evening of April 23, James (Buck) Belwood passed in peace at home in Overland Park, Kansas, surrounded by his family and loved ones, at the age of 99. Born in Marshall, Missouri, his family moved to Kansas City when he was 8 years old. An acorn he planted that summer in their back yard on Grand Avenue grew into a Burr Oak tree that stands today.  Jim was a decorated Air Force Captain and flew an astounding 34 missions after altering his weight on medical forms as he was supposedly too lightweight to operate hydraulics on a B-24.  He proved them wrong! Stationed with the 93rd Bomb group at Hardwick Airfield near Norwich in 1944, he met the love of his life at a dance. After completing his missions, he returned to the United States, but held out hope that 16 year old Elizabeth (Betty) Stannard would eventually come to America to marry him. In 1946 she undertook the journey that would change her life, to become his beloved bride.


After leaving the Air Force, Jim worked as an insurance broker for many years, but his joys in life were his family, friends, woodworking, fishing, and his garden.  He was a devoted father who never missed a piano performance of either of his daughters and always had his tape recorder at the ready.  He was always eager to design and build something clever in the house that would please Betty, but a “quick trip" to the hardware store could turn into hours.  He and Betty had many lovely trips to England to see friends and relatives, and to Europe and the Caribbean.

Jim was pre-deceased by Betty, his dear wife of 70 years. He is survived by his sister, Barbara Birkhead, of Durham, N.C., and daughters Virginia Fruchterman (Jim) of Palo Alto, California and Beverly Gilbert (Bruce) of Overland Park. He is also survived by 5 grandchildren: Jason House (Kellie) and Russ House (Corrie) of Overland Park; Jimmy Fruchterman of Boulder, Colorado; Andy Fruchterman of Palo Alto, California; Kate Fruchterman Kadet (Phil) of New York City, and by 7 great-grandchildren. 

You are sorely missed Boppa, but we are so grateful we had you as long as we did, and hope you are dancing again with Grammy. 


Please make donations to Ewing’s Sarcoma research at the Mary Crowley Cancer Research Center.   


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