FIshing 08

James Andrew Kissell Sr.

July 30, 1944 ~ December 11, 2020 (age 76)

Obituary Image


"And ye now therefore have sorrow: but I will see you again, and your heart shall rejoice, and your joy no man taketh from you" John 16:22

James Andrew Kissell, Sr., 76, of Portage, Pennsylvania was called home by our Lord Jesus Christ on Friday, December 11, 2020 surrounded by his children. Loving son of the late Helen and George Kissell. Also proceeded in death by infant son Matthew. Devoted husband to wife Judy. Treasured father of son Matthew; and wife Rebecca, son James Jr; wife Deborah, and daughter Fidalma; and husband Jeffrey. Dear brother of David and Mark. Proudest grandfather ever of Sebastyan and fiance Emma; Victoria  and husband Zac; Elliott and fiance Lydia;Alexandra, Olivia, Emma, and George Henry; as well as Christian and wife Evelina, Breeahna, Victoria and husband Jaread, and Mason. Honored great-grandfather of Leo, Freya, and Myles. Dedicated step-father/grandfather of Sharon and her children Alicia (Dalton and Evelyn), Carrie, and Jason; Matthew and wife Christine and his children Angelica (Nevaeh and Aubree), Jessica, and Autumn; and Susan and her children Amber (husband Ty) and Frank. Dad sure had a very large family that he loved dearly and an even larger gathering of friends and comrades, who he cherished as well, that will miss him greatly. Our father was a strong, yet humble man who devoted his entire life to his family, God, his county and the service of others. He served our great country as a member of the United States Coast Guard, Pennsylvania as a State Trooper, and our hometown as a police officer and a firefighter. Dad also worked many hard years as a coal miner at Bethlehem Mine 33 to support his family; we were never without. After retirement, he loved his "side" job as a bus driver; he adored children. Throughout the years, dad was a member of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, FEMA, the Knights of Columbus, and a Scout Master of Boys Scouts of America. Also, dad was an ordained minister, an active member of the Portage Borough Council and a proud Mayor of the town he so loved; good ole Portage. Dad was also a very dedicated, hardworking volunteer for the Portage Food Pantry. Not a day went by when our father wasn't doing something to help someone in need. Let's not forget dad's passion for the great outdoors. From hunting to fishing; to camping to hiking, dad enjoyed any activity that allowed him the opportunity to appreciate God's country. He truly loved spending time with his sons and grandsons hunting and fishing; whether it was in Potter County or Wilmore Dam - and he was certainly always ready for buck season and their next fishing trip to Erie. Our father will be truly missed by so many in the community. Friends received from 6-8 p.m., Thursday, January 14, 2021 at the Serenko-Claar Funeral Home, PC, Portage. At his request, services will be private for immediate family only. In honor of Dad who was always putting the needs of others before his own, in lieu of flowers, the family requests to please join them in honoring his commitment to serving others by making any donation to the Portage Food Pantry. Please reach out to any member of James' family for further details.  Online condolences may be made at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James Andrew Kissell Sr., please visit our floral store.


You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of James Andrew Kissell Sr.
© 2021 Serenko-Claar Funeral Home, PC, Portage. All Rights Reserved. Funeral Home website by CFS & TA | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy