James Bruce Obituary, Death – James E. Bruce, Jr. passed away unexpectedly at his home in Pittsburgh on November 25, 2022. He was only 58 years old. After completing his high school education at Taylor Allderdice in 1964, he attended Indiana University of Pennsylvania, where he earned both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in History, with a concentration in Labor History. He spent his entire life reading, and throughout that time he kept his historical knowledge current. Jim spent the majority of his working life at the Office of Vocational Rehabilitation, Blindness and Visual Services. He was there for 25 years.
His life’s work, his fellow employees at BVS, and his Union were all things that he held in the highest regard. Jim had been a member of the SEIU Local 668 PSSU for his entire working life, and during that time he held the positions of Chief Shop Steward, Executive Board Member, and Secretary-Treasurer. Even after he retired, he continued to be an active member of his Union, particularly enjoying participating in political campaigns and attending the Labor Day Parade. Jim and Joan, who had been married for 48 years, took advantage of their retirement years to do some island hopping in the Caribbean so that they could get away from the harsh Pittsburgh winters.
The happy “snow birds” Jim and Joan shared a home in Sun City Center, Florida, where they spent their winters. The people who meant the most to Jim were his wife Joan, his children, and his friends. His mother, Esther Bruce Buckley, and his father, James E. Bruce, passed away before Jim. He is survived by his devoted wife, Joan Coultas Bruce; his sister, Patricia Bruce Guerra; his brothers, Jeff and Scott Buckley; his sister-in-law, Sister Mary Joan Coultas, CDP; and a large number of nieces and nephews.
His mother, Esther Bruce Buckley, and his father, James E. Bruce, passed away before Jim. The funeral services will be held in strict confidence. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Sisters of Divine Providence Retirement Fund, the Pittsburgh Symphony Society, the American Civil Liberties Union, or a charity of the donor’s choosing. Lawrenceville’s WALTER J. ZALEWSKI FUNERAL HOME is responsible for the arrangements.