Cover photo for James Wornall's Obituary
James Wornall Profile Photo
1938 James 2022

James Wornall

January 16, 1938 — September 7, 2022

Overland Park

James Frederick Wornall, 84, went to be with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ on September 7, 2022. He passed peacefully surrounded by his family lovingly embracing him. James was born on January 16, 1938, to John Bristow Wornall III and Lucy Thorning Wornall. He was born into a family with rich Kansas City History. James was a descendant of John B. Wornall (Philanthropist and early pioneer of Kansas City) and the Rev Thomas Johnson (Founder of the Shawnee Methodist Indian Mission). James was known for his sweet and kind demeanor.

When James was 14 years old, on his own, he would walk to church and attend service at Wornall Road Baptist every Sunday. It was there that he gave his life to Jesus Christ and was baptized.

In his youth, James had a happy childhood and loved being in the Boy Scouts. His mother Lucy was the Den mother and held boy scout meetings in their home. He was especially proud of being an Eagle Scout and a member of the Tribe of Mic-o-say. James attended Pembroke Country Day and graduated from Northwestern University. He married Ilah “Ruthie” (Davis) Wornall who was the love of his life and together they had two children, Desiree Wornall-Rivas and John B Wornall V. James is also the father of James Wornall Jr and Elizabeth Wornall.

James retired from Employers Reinsurance Corporation as Second Vice President. He also served 29 years in the Army Reserves before he retired as a Lieutenant Colonel.

James was a member of the Gideons for over 30 years and loved handing out Gideon Bibles. At one point he was President of the Gideons in the greater Kansas City area. During that time his garage and basement held several boxes filled with Gideon Bibles all in the Russian language. James continued to be involved in the Gideons an handing out Bibles up into his 80s and loved giving them out to the students at Johnson County Community College.

James had a secret talent that he did not share with many outside of his immediate family. He was a secret opera singer who loved watching the 3 Tenors and would sing opera very loudly and very frequently in the house. His beautiful vibrato could be heard all throughout the house. He was too shy to sing publicly except he did sing a duet with his daughter Desiree at church once after much coercion.

The last eight years of James’ life were very happy. He lived with his daughter Desiree, son-in-law Victor, and his three grandchildren JR, Derek, and Jasmine. His life was filled with new boy scout adventures, campouts, golfing, family dinners, and lots of love. He was also instrumental in helping to raise them which gave everyone lots of joy. James was also a loving and involved grandfather with his son John’s two boys Elijah Paul and Samuel James and loved visiting them in Mississippi and face timing with them every chance he could get.

James is preceded in death by his parents, John and Lucy Wornall, his brother John Bristow Wornall VI, and his wife of over 40 years Ilah “Ruthie” Wornall who passed away in 2017. James leaves behind his children Desiree Blythe Wornall-Rivas (Victor Rivas), John Bristow Wornall V (Gwendolyn Wornall), Elizabeth Wornall and James Wornall Jr. James also leaves behind his five cherished grandchildren, JR (Oscar Juan Preciado II), Derek Anthony Wornall-Rivas, Jasmine Velora Wornall-Rivas, Elijah Paul Wornall and Samuel James Wornall. As well as Nieces, great nieces and Nephews, and many beloved cousins.

Services will be held at Lenexa Baptist Church, 15320 W. 87th St Parkway, Lenexa, Kansas 66219, and will be officiated by Rev Chad McDonald on September 12, 2022. Visitation will be held at 10 am and a memorial service will be held at 11 am followed by a burial. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to The Gideons International.

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Monday, September 12, 2022

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Monday, September 12, 2022

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Central time)

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Monday, September 12, 2022

12:45 - 1:00 pm (Central time)

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