Cover photo for James M. Degard's Obituary
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James M. Degard

October 31, 1951 — June 21, 2023

James M. Degard

James "Jim" M. DeGard, 71, of Monticello, passed away on Wednesday, June 21, 2023 at IU Health White Memorial Hospital. His many friends called him JD.

He was born on October 31, 1951 in Chicago to the late John Charles and Francis Pearl (Lowery) DeGard.

Jim was a foreman at Inland Steel for twenty years before becoming a truck driver for several different trucking companies. His passions were motorcycles, picking on his guitar and having a beer with his buddies. He belonged to several motorcycle clubs over the years and enjoyed his many bike excursions. Jim enjoyed working in his garage, mowing his lawn, and before declining health, and while living on Lake Shafer, he enjoyed fishing and boating. He also played Santa Claus for his grandchildren and his friends grandchildren.

Along with his life partner, Cynthia K. DeGard of Monticello, surviving are his stepchildren, Dana (Brian) Oberman of Champaign, IL, Mike (Michelle) Kief of Seymour, Mark (Jennifer) Kief of Grand Rapids, MI; brothers, Don (Sue) DeGard of Knox and John (Betty) DeGard of Hammond;sisters, Darlene (Wally) Gore of Merrillville, IN and Donna Rippy of Peoria, IL; twelve grandchildren; ten great grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

He was also preceded in death by a stepson, Mitch Kief, and a brother, Joe DeGard.

Visitation will be from 2:00 pm until 4:00 pm Saturday, July 1, 2023 at Springer-Voorhis-Draper Funeral Home of Monticello.

Memorial contributions may be given to the Kidney Foundation, American Heart Association, or toDiabetes Association. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home.

Friends and family are encouraged to share a photo, a memory, or messages of condolence at

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James M. Degard, please visit our flower store.


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