Illinois Emergency Services Management Association

Remembering Director James Lutz

The Illinois Emergency Services Management Association regrets to inform our members of the passing of former Grundy County Emergency Manager James Lutz. The Association would like to extend our condolences to Jim's family, colleagues, and many friends. 

Obituary of James Lutz

At the age of 67, Jim went to sleep like any other day and woke up in the presence of the Lord on January 31, 2018. He was born and raised in Morris, IL and a resident of Mazon, IL for the past 27 years. Jim was a graduate of Morris Community High School Class of 1969.  He retired as the Grundy County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) Director in 2014 after spending 34 years on the job. He got his start with the County in 1969 as a volunteer supervisor of the County’s weather program and became Deputy Director of the EMA Department in 1980 and was promoted to Director in 1984.

Preceded by his father, Frank Lutz, Jr. (2017) and his mother, Beverly (nee Scott) Lutz (2015); one sister, Katherine Ann Mallcheck and his father in-law, Neil Janssen.

Survived by his loving and devoted wife of 28 years, Brenda A. (nee Janssen) Lutz of Mazon; one son, Christopher (Erin) Lutz of Olathe, Kansas; two daughters, Kimberly (Mark) Malone of Naperville and Magen Lutz of Joliet; five grandchildren, Ava and Landen Lutz and Marissa, Marla and McKenna Malone; two sisters, Mary (Charles) Sparrow of Mazon and Elizabeth Ann "Lisa" (Lon) Vernnon of Junction City, KS; his mother-in-law, Anna Janssen of Shorewood, his three brothers-in-law, John Janssen of Palm Beach Gardens FL; Doug Janssen of Channahon and Phil (Dawn) Janssen of Dingsman Ferry, PA.; one sister-in-law, Michelle (Mike Kirkland) Janssen of Pittsburg MO; and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins also survive.

Jim's love for life and willingness to give back to the community will always be remembered.

Funeral services for James E. Lutz will be held on be Friday, February 9, 2018, at 8 p.m. at the Fred C. Dames Funeral Home, 1201 W. Route 6 at Deerpath Drive, Morris. Pastor Nick Sandeno will officiate. As it was Jim's request, cremation rites will be accorded following his funeral service and private interment will take place at Mt. Carmel Cemetery, Morris. In lieu of flowers, memorials to Joliet Area Community Hospice in his name would be appreciated. Visitation will be Friday from 3:00 p.m. until time of services at 8:00 p.m. For more information, please call (815) 942-5040 or visit his Memorial Tribute at