Brother James 'Jim' Friend


James “Jim” Friend, 71, of Urbandale, Iowa passed away on Thursday January 19, 2023 surrounded by his loving wife and children. He led a very full life and was a true blessing to all who knew him.

Jim was born October 16, 1951 in Des Moines, Iowa to James and Rosemary (McCoy) Friend. Jim was raised Catholic attending St. Anthony’s School and later graduating from Dowling Catholic High School in 1969. After high school, Jim would join the electrical apprenticeship and become a member of the Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, IBEW 347.

In 1970, Jim married and had his first child, Melissa. Jim continued to work with the Union as a journeyman electrician during this time. He enjoyed spending time canoeing, motorcycle riding, and began his life-long passion of woodworking and home improvement.

Throughout the following years, Jim became an avid Kansas City Chiefs and Royals fan, participated in pool leagues, enjoyed barbeques and continued his endless home improvement projects. In 1980, Jim remarried and had two additional children, William “Bill” and Kelly. Shortly after in 1983, Jim, along with his business partner Tim, began his own electrical business, Mid-Iowa Electric Company. In 1993 Jim sold Mid-Iowa Electric Company to Biermann Electric and continued working for them until his retirement in 2017.

On September 1, 2002, Jim married the love of his life, Diane, and together they happily blended a family of 7 children. Diane felt surrounded by love in everything that Jim did. He always thought of others and how he could help them in some way, sometimes by the things he did, or said and many times by the little gifts of love he made for them. Never was his iPad far from him. He used it to reach out to friends and family, get updates on scores and to play games. Jim was, and always will be the love of her life. The only argument they had was when ending their conversations, for whom loved who more.

Jim was a very compassionate, thoughtful person to all who crossed his path. He cared deeply for his family and friends and would be there for any in need at a moment’s notice. He loved to give sentimental cards and little mementos often without occasion. Jim was a jokester, even in his final hours, and loved to be surrounded by laughter! His friends and siblings best described him as a steady force, a gentle leader, a father figure and peacemaker. Jim would be sure to tell you to enjoy dessert first as his favorite ice cream or icy treat would melt otherwise!

Jim was preceded in death by his parents; and sister, Carol Henderson. He is survived by his wife, Diane Friend; children, Melissa Friend (Fred), William Friend (Jessica), and Kelly Nunn (Zach); his 4 step-children, Angie Sindergard (Todd), Jeremy Bro (Lisa), Kris Bro (Marsha) and Andrew Bro; his 15 grandchildren, Emily, Erin, Morgan, Grant, Addisyn, Lily, Canon, Jake, Ali, Henry, Olympia, Georgia, Selwyn, Jayna and Aliya; and 3 great-grandchildren.

Services will be held at Hamilton’s on Westown Parkway, 3601 Westown Parkway in West Des Moines, IA on Sunday, January 29, 2023 at 4:30 p.m. with visitation prior from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m. Private burial will be at Glendale Cemetery on Monday.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be directed to ChildServe in Johnston, IA Donate Here.

Brother James 'Jim' Friend