April 23, 1924 – July 5, 2018
James Eugene Rudasics passed away on July 5, 2018 at home. Jim began life in South Bend in 1924. He was the son of Steven and Ethel (Nemeth) Rudasics who preceded him in death. Also preceding him in death was his identical twin brother, Steven.
Jim’s wife of 60 years, Betty, predeceased him. Surviving him are his daughter, Hon. Mary Rudasics Harper (Hon. David L. Chidester) of Valparaiso, IN.; sons, Thomas J Rudasics of Hilton Head, SC., Randall J. (Kathie) Rudasics of Steamboat Springs, CO., and Jeffrey E. Rudasics of Granger. Also surviving is a grandson, James E. Harper of Valparaiso.
Jim graduated from South Bend Central High School in 1942. At Central, he was an All-Star Athlete. He excelled at tennis and lettered for 4 years on the Central baseball team under Coach John Wooden. Coach Wooden was responsible for helping Jim and his brother Steve obtain baseball scholarships to Purdue University.
During World War II, Jim enlisted in the United States Army and served with the 20th Field Artillery Battalion, 4th Infantry, in the Normandy Campaign. He was awarded the Purple Heart for injuries suffered at St. Lo, France. He also was awarded a Bronze Star, European African Middle Eastern Service Medal, as well as the Good Conduct Medal. He was honorably discharged from the service while a patient at Vaughn General Hospital, Hines, IL.
After his separation from the Army, Jim earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Purdue, as well as, a Master’s Degree in Psychology.
Jim was an entrepreneur who started several successful businesses including Michiana Personnel and Star Staffing Services. Star Staffing workers were employed throughout the Michiana area. He was active in the Elks, Optimist Club, Knights of Columbus, and served as an officer of the National Personnel Association.
An avid fan of the Fighting Irish, Purdue and the Cubs, Jim enjoyed sports with a passion. He never missed a Notre Dame football game. His family often heard stories of him sneaking into Notre Dame basketball games as a child, serving as a Notre Dame batboy, working as a caddie, and his baseball exploits including playing in a semi-pro baseball game with Jackie Robinson, and Jim’s 3-day tryout with the Cubs in 1947. For many years Jim and his wife vacationed at their second home on the Big Island of Hawaii on the Kohala Coast, where he enjoyed playing tennis, the beach and dining out.
Jim loved meeting people and loved having engaging conversations with family, friends and strangers. He will be greatly missed.
Funeral services will be held on Monday, July 9, at 1:30 p.m., with visitation from 11:30 to 1:30 p.m., at the McGann Hay, Granger Chapel, 13260 SR 23, enter off Cherry Rd.
Memorial donations may be made to the Center for Hospice Care.