James Rooney

  • Born: October 30, 1936
  • Died: October 27, 2020
  • Location: Avon Lake, Ohio

Busch Funeral and Crematory Services

163 Avon Belden Road
Avon Lake, OH 44012

Tel. (440) 933-3202

Tribute & Message From The Family

Loving Husband, Father, Grandfather, Brother, Friend

"I had an inheritance from my father, It was the moon and the sun.

And though I roam all over the world, the spending of it's never done."

- Ernest Hemingway

And so it is with James Patrick Rooney Jr., who unexpectedly passed away October 27, 2020, in Avon Lake, Ohio. Born October 30, 1936, in Dayton, Ohio, Jim lived a vibrant life. Growing up, he attended catholic schools in Akron and other towns before graduating high school in Alliance, Ohio. He loved theater and performed in high school musicals and plays. His love for theater never faded and he often regaled his family with spontaneous renditions of "The Impossible Dream" from Man of La Mancha. In high school, he worked in retail sales at a local clothing store. After attending The Ohio State University and a subsequent stint in the USMC, of which he fondly reminisced about, he returned to retail at Higbee's department store in Cleveland. This led to a long and successful career at Kaufmann's department store in Pittsburgh where over the years he rose through the ranks to Sr. Vice President, forged many lifelong friendships, enjoyed mentoring others, and earned the admiration of those with whom he worked. Naturally, with a career in retail, he appreciated fine clothes and was an impeccable dresser.

Jim was father to six children and provided his family with a comfortable life in the suburbs of Pittsburgh. Christmas was always a festive occasion. As emcee of Christmas morning, his children remember waiting anxiously on the stairs for Jim to make his grand entrance and the unwrapping of gifts to commence. Holiday meals were equally entertaining often filled with raucous laughter, an amusement his family will always treasure.

An exceptionally hard-working man with boundless energy, he bestowed this trait on all his children. When he wasn't working, he would enjoy afternoons watching his alma mater play football. Typically, he fell asleep on the sofa and commenced to snoring loudly. The quintessential Irishman, he often had a glass of his favorite Irish whiskey by his side. Jim spent his "retirement" years back in the Cleveland area where together he and his beloved wife Kathy, of 19 years, owned several salons. They enjoyed a very active social life filled with friends and traveling, trips to Quebec, St. Croix and Upper Michigan were among his favorites.

He could be equal parts stern and affectionate. At times brusque but others, patient. He was always larger than life and, ultimately, very loved. He will be deeply missed.

Son of the late James Patrick Sr and Verna Rooney, he is survived by his wife Kathy; sibling Sister Sheila Rooney, RGS; children, Erin, Sean, Colin (Cindy), Megan, Kevin (Celeste) and Caitlin Rooney, with former wife Elizabeth, and his 15 grandchildren. He leaves a legacy both robust and secure.

Memorial contributions may be forwarded by check only please to Sisters of Our Lady of Charity of the Good Shepherd-Carrollton, Inc. 620 Roswell Rd NW, Carrollton, OH 44615.

All services will be private. www.buschcares.com 440-933-3202

Condolence & Memory Journal

Jim was a great guy and with a strong sense of what he wanted and needed to get done, but along with the tough he had a big heart, strong sense of humor, and was always ready to help get things done. I remember Jim with fondness especially at my themed Christmas parties for my Kaufmann friends which seemed to bring out the Irish idea of partying every year. Jim you will be missed, fond memories and my condolences to Kathy, and his extensive Pittsburgh family.

Posted by Lynne Sperling - Studio City, CA - Coworker   November 04, 2020

My heart goes out to the entire Rooney family. Jim exemplified what goals could be achieved by exhibiting a strong working mentality. He was a mentor of mine and for that I am extremely grateful. Thank you for all of the laughter and support. Working for you were the best years of my career.

Posted by Joanne Bekampis - Pittsburgh, PA - Friend   November 02, 2020

I was sad to hear of the passing of Mr. Rooney. Ask anybody that worked at Kaufmanns when Mr. Rooney would make a branch visit you could his heels clicking long before he appeared. I learned a lot from Mr. Rooney he helped to shape many young people with his strong work ethic and made us never settle for anything but the best.

Posted by Elaine Fitzgerald - Pittsburgh, PA - Coworker   November 02, 2020

Kathy and family, I was deeply saddened to learn of Jim's passing. I hope you know that God has wrapped you all in his loving arms during this hard time. Kathy, please know that your Mom and her sisters were waiting for Jim and have wrapped him in their arms filled with love and loads family. I am so sorry for your loss. Love you, Chris

Posted by Chris Richardson - San Marcos, TX, TX - Family   November 01, 2020


To Kathy, my condolences to the Rooney family. We lost a great leader.

Christine Hammond ex employee, OH.

Posted by Christine Hammond - University Heights, OH - Coworker   November 01, 2020

Sandy and I are deeply sorry for Kathy and family. Jim was a great friend a very fine man and I will miss him greatly. He was a man to admire.

Posted by Jim Radebaugh - Galena, OH - Friend   November 01, 2020

Our hearts are broken over the sudden loss of our friend and neighbor. Summers will not be the same without seeing Jim enjoying his beautifully landscaped yard from his deck with a glass of wine in hand. Jim and Kathy have both been wonderful mentors to our boys and special friends to our entire family. It is with much love we send our deepest condolences to Kathy and Jim's family. We will deeply miss him and our lively conversations.

Posted by Barb McGaughey - Avon Lake, OH - Neighbor   October 31, 2020

My condolences, thoughts and prayers...very saddened to hear this. Hope you will find peace and comfort during this difficult time.

Posted by Linda Dymond - Aurora, CO - Family Friend   October 30, 2020

Kathy and family, I was very saddened to hear of Jim's passing. I always respected his business sense, his sense of humor and his energy for life. Our sincerest condolences, we will remember Jim often.

Posted by Dale Sparber - Pepper Pike, OH - Coworker   October 30, 2020

Our prayers & love sent to Kathy & Jim's children. May the precious memories you each have be sealed safely in your hearts, comforting you. God bless. Patrick, Patty &
Annamarie Murphy

Posted by Patricia (Patty) Murphy - Mentor, OH - Family Friend   October 29, 2020

To Kathy and family, My prayers are with you in this incredibly difficult time. It was an honor to know Jim.

Posted by Clara Osterhage - Dayton, OH - Coworker   October 29, 2020

I am so saddened to learn of the passing of Mr. Rooney. I had the privilege of having worked for him in the 80's at Kaufmann's. There are so many lessons that I learned from him which have enabled me to be a successful business owner today. I thank Mr. Rooney for that, and pray that he rests in peace. My thoughts and prayers to his family.

Posted by Bob Shooer - Pittsburgh, PA - Coworker   October 29, 2020

I am saddened to think the last time I saw you , not realizing it would be my last ... there is never enough time but one thing I know is the last 12 years I've got to know you have been a pleasure ! You were a caring man who also meant buisness , we will sure miss you calling and hearing your voice. Highpoint plaza loved you jim as did I , may you find peace ♥And your family as they are in my prayers.

Posted by Jessica Prisby - Akron, OH - Friend   October 29, 2020


I will forever miss answering the phone “ Hi, Thank you for calling Great clips “ and hearing Jim on the other end saying “ Hey, kid “ or the time he said “
Love ya, Kid “ & I said “ Love you too” & I turn around to see the other stylist stare at me. Jim, you will be missed!! Rest In Peace my friend

Posted by Krissy Selman - Cuyahoga Falls, OH - friend   October 29, 2020

Family Album