James Allaire, 95, Former Katonah Civil Engineer

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James Allaire died at age 95 in Iowa.

BEDFORD, N.Y. – James Mortimer, formerly of Katonah, died Jan. 5 in Iowa City, Iowa. He was 95.

He was born March 6, 1917, in Brooklyn, N.Y., to Douglas and Grace Allaire. He received a bachelor's degree in civil engineering from Cooper Union in 1939 and joined Turner Construction Company the next year.

Allaire married Virginia McCann at St. Rose of Lima Church in Brooklyn in 1942. They moved to Ashtabula, Ohio, for a Turner project for the war effort, the first of several moves during his nearly 50 years with Turner.

The family returned to New York, followed by moves to Missouri, Ontario, and then back to Katonah. His final Turner transfer was to Southern California in 1965. Allaire and his wife lived in Arcadia, Calif., until they moved to Iowa in 1997.

At Turner, he rose from job site timekeeper in 1940 to vice president and operations manager of the Los Angeles district. He officially retired in 1982, but consulted as project executive on several Los Angeles projects throughout the 1980s.

Among his major projects for Turner were several buildings in New York, including the American Airlines terminal at Idlewild Airport, and the New York State Theater at Lincoln Center. He also served as an arbitrator and mediator for national arbitration organizations through 2003.

Allaire enjoyed opera, art and languages. He traveled extensively with his wife, driving around the U.S. and through Europe several times, as well as visiting China and South America.

He was predeceased by his wife; three brothers, Douglas, John and Frank; a sister, Grace White; and a brother-in-law, the Rev. Kevin McCann.

Allaire is survived by four children, Jim (Cheryl) Allaire, of St. Cloud, Minn.; Virginia (David) Beals, of Columbus, Ohio; Doug (Ann) Allaire, of Iowa City; and Neil (Lois) Allaire, of Broomfield, Colo.; seven grandchildren; six great-grandchildren; a sister-in-law and a brother-in-law.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 a.m. Saturday at St. Thomas More Church in Coralville. Burial will be at Oakland Cemetery in Iowa City. Gay and Ciha Funeral Services is handling arrangements.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Iowa City Hospice, 1025 Wade St., Iowa City, IA 52240.

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