James Best, 82, Korea veteran, troop leader, worked for American Can

James “Jim” Best of Bethel, and formerly of Ridgefield Connecticut, passed away at his home on Sept 6, 2013, following a sudden advance in his Lewy Bodies Disease.

Jim was born in Milwaukee, WI on Nov 4th 1930, to Anna Hilgert and Fred J. Best.  He grew up in Iowa, graduating from Mason City High where he lettered in wrestling.  He also spent many hours working for his father and uncle in their cheese factory, Best Brothers.

Jim graduated from Iowa State University in 1952 and married Audrey Stubbe in December of that year.  Jim was a lieutenant in the Army Corp of Engineers during the Korean Conflict.

After the war, Jim returned to Wisconsin and went to work for Marathon Corp. The purchase of Marathon by American Can in 1966 brought the family to Ridgefield, CT. He worked for American Can for 38 years in marketing, research and product development for flexible packaging.

Upon retirement from American Can in 1991, Jim went to work for James River Corp for 5 years.

Jim was the co-leader of the Boy Scout Troop 216 for many years.  He especially enjoyed the monthly camping trips the Troop went on throughout the year.

In his retirement Jim became an accomplished bratwurst maker as well as being certified by the State of Connecticut as a Master Gardener.  He was active in the Ridgefield Men's Club and St Andrews Church.

Jim was a passionate and devoted Green Bay Packer fan throughout his life.  He attended the famous Ice Bowl in 1967 (GreenBay 21-Dallas 17), in addition to being a long-term shareholder.

Jim is survived by his second wife of 33 years, Phyllis Newman Best; his daughter Lisa of Hoboken NJ; son John and his wife Dani and their two children Cara and Chris of Downingtown PA; and son Peter and daughter-in-law Tammy along with their children Michael, Anna and Jackson of San Rafael CA.  Jim is also survived by his sister-in-law Lois Newman and brother-in-law Dean Stubbe, as well as cousins Bill and Marion (Best) Donovan and numerous Hilgert cousins.  Jim's first wife predeceased him in 1977.

There will be no calling hours.

The family will hold a memorial service at St Andrew's Lutheran Church in Ridgefield CT on Sept 21, 2013 at 11:00 am.  A reception will follow at the church.

In lieu of flowers, please send contributions to the St Andrews Organ Fund or Domestic Violence Center of your choice.

The Bethel Funeral Home is handling arrangements. On line condolences at Hullfuneralservice.com.