Rev. James Heidt, Esq.

Obituary of Rev. James K. Heidt, Esq.

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CANASTOTA . . . The Rev. James K. Heidt, Esq., 70, passed away peacefully, on Monday, June 12, 2023, at his home. He was born on April 17, 1953, in Suffern, NY, as Kevin Bristow, he was adopted by Herbert and Dorothy Heidt into a fully nurturing and dynamic family. As a child, Jim was immersed into the intimate family culture of railroaders: riding with his dad throughout NYS to inventory the lost NYO&W, watching his grandfather working on a weekend steam excursion train, and, during high school, became the 4th generation by working on the O&N, the Ogdensburg and Norwood Railway, the family business and 25 - mile shortline railroad. Jim went to college at Buffalo State, where he cofounded the rugby team, then on to law school at Ohio Northern University. He was admitted to the NY bar in 1983 and practiced in NYS his entire 40-year career. Later in public or private service, he specialized in family court practice, calling it his real-life ministry in helping others. In 1991, he was the first, among others in the Fourth Department, to receive the Hon. Michael F. Dillon Law Guardian Award for service to children before the courts. Received into the Episcopal Church in 1990, Jim eventually discerned a call to the priesthood, being ordained at St. John's in Oneida. "Father Jim" served at St. John's, at Trinity in Canastota, and Zion in Rome, loving them all. His love for trains was lifelong. He authored the book, "Abandoned Railroads of Oneida County". Passionate for the artistic hobby of scale model railroading, Jim served as trustee for the global National Model Railroad Association, and president of its Northeastern Region. But he is proudest as the founder of its Central NY Division, and of all the friends he has been blessed with, his train friends are the closest. Finally, his beloved O&N of his youth continued in his full basement train layout, publicized in the international hobby press and visited many times on tour. The layout continues with the love of its crew of best friends. Jim was predeceased by his parents, prior wife Suzanne, and beloved last cat, Potter. He is survived by his wife, Meribeth Seaman; his two children, Kevin (Melissa) Heidt, and Rebecca (Kristen) Heidt-Stitt, two grandchildren Olivia and Rory, all of Pottstown, PA.; and a sister, Carol Desimone. A celebration Mass will be held at 11 a.m. on Saturday, June 24, 2023, at Zion Episcopal Church, 140 W. Liberty Street, Rome, with a reception party to follow. No calling hours - come to the party. Arrangements are under the supervision of the J. Homer Ball Funeral Home, Inc., 201 James Street, Canastota. Memorials in lieu of flowers may be made to Zion Episcopal Church in Rome, supporting its various ministries to the community. The caring and professional care displayed by the nurses and staff of Hospice & Palliative Care, Inc., was of much comfort to the entire family.
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Memorial Service

11:00 am
Saturday, June 24, 2023
Zion Episcopal Church
140 W. Liberty Street
Rome, New York, United States

Reception Party

A reception party will be held at the church following the mass.
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Rev. James Heidt, Esq.

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Rev. James Heidt, Esq.

1953 - 2023

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