James Michael Jost, age 77, passed away on July 22, 2023. Mr. Jost was born in Washington, DC, and raised in Wheaton and Silver Spring, Maryland; he was a long-time resident of West Friendship, Maryland. In 2013, he and his wife, Mary Alice, retired to Ankeny, Iowa.
He attended St. Catherine Labouré Elementary School. He was a graduate of Our Lady of Good Counsel High School, which he attended from 1959 to 1963. He earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Catholic University in 1967. Mr. Jost married Mary Alice (née Tumulty) in October of 1967.
Mr. Jost was inducted into the U.S. Army on April 4, 1968. He completed his basic training and AIT Training at Fort Leonardwood, Missouri. Mr. Jost then entered the Officer Candidate School at Fort Belvoir, Virginia. At its completion, he was a second Lieutenant in the Army Corps of Engineers. In 1969, he was posted as Project Manager at Edgewood Arsenal in Maryland for his first assignment, constructing multiple laboratory buildings. In 1970, he was posted to Dover Air Force Base in Delaware where he was project manager and constructed multiple hangars for C5A Aircraft. Mr. Jost attained the rank of Captain in the Corps of Engineers, and was posted in 1971 to Camp Howze, South Korea where he was Company Commander of Charlie Company. In this position, he was primarily responsible for the construction of roads, culverts, and bridges in and around Panmunjom, Korea in the DMZ.
After his tenure in the Army, he had a long career in the fields of construction management, real estate development, and property management. He worked with the Rouse Company in Columbia Maryland from 1972 until 1980. While with Rouse, he was project manager for the Harper House high rise condominium in the Village of Cross Keys in Baltimore, Maryland. He was also project manager on shopping malls in Echelon and Woodbridge, New Jersey; Market Street, Pennsylvania; Beechwood, Ohio; and Columbia, Maryland. In 1980, Mr. Jost joined Robert Construction in Rockville, Maryland. During his tenure with Robert Construction, he oversaw construction of the Atrium office building, Montrose Professional Park, Montgomery Industrial Park, Miramont Villas, Towne Plaza, Fox Chapel Shopping Center. He also managed two projects for Robert Construction in Herndon, Virginia: Elden Plaza and the Marriott Residence Inn. In the 1990s, Mr. Jost began James M. Jost & Co., where he developed land for home construction in Northern Virginia and West Virginia. In addition, James M. Jost & Co. oversaw notable renovation projects in Baltimore and new construction projects in Howard County, Maryland. New construction in Howard County included McDonough Crossing Office and Retail Center, Ten Oaks Office Building, Chartwell Professional Park, Chartwell Medical Center, Cascades Office Building. The Company took part in the renovation of Penn Station in Baltimore. And Mr. Jost oversaw numerous historical projects and restorations primarily in downtown Baltimore at this time as well: Gallery Tower, The Apartments at Atrium at Market Center (previously, the Hecht Company Building circa 1924), Eutaw Street Garage, The Standard Luxury Apartments (previously, the Rockefeller’s Standard Oil Building, circa 1919), Charles Plaza and Charles Towers Apartment and Retail Center, Oella Mill in Ellicott City (previously, the Dickey Company Mill, circa 1918), 39 West Lexington Luxury Apartments (previously, the BG&E Building, circa 1916), The Hotel Monaco, Kimpton Group (previously the B&O Building, circa 1908). Mr. Jost loved working on historic restorations, and he was proud of his accomplishments. He retired in 2010.
Mr. Jost led a life of service in the Washington, DC and Iowa communities that meant so much to him. He was a member of the Board of Trustees of the Anchor Mental Health Association, earning a commendation from this service organization for his contributions as President of the Board. He also served on the Board of Advisors at Holy Cross Academy in Kensington, Maryland. He donated time and treasure to the Academy of the Holy Cross in returning the statue of the blessed mother from the Upton Street campus of Holy Cross/Dunbarton College to the front entrance garden of the Strathmore Avenue Campus of the Academy of the Holy Cross. Prior to the statue’s arrival, Mr. Jost directed the construction of a new wall and plinth on which to place the statue. This still stands today. After moving to Iowa, and in his service as a Knight of Columbus, Mr. Jost regularly volunteered at the Des Moines Catholic Worker, providing meals for the homeless.
The Jost and Tumulty families were at the heart of Mr. Jost’s most joyful experiences. Family dinners, vacations, reunions, and time spent together meant everything to him. His friends from the Washington, DC area were lifelong, and some of his happiest times were playing golf and traveling with these amazing people. He leaves behind friends and relatives who are grateful to have known him and love him. His survivors include his wife of 55 years, Mary Alice Tumulty Jost of Des Moines, Iowa; two daughters, Melissa Jost Stalvey of Des Moines, Iowa and Jessica Jost-Costanzo (Ryan) of Ebensburg, Pennsylvania. He is also survived by his sister Judy Haines (Larry) of Millsboro, Delaware. He was most proud of his three grandchildren, Matthew Stalvey (16), Catherine Stalvey (14), and Nora Costanzo (11). He is also survived by numerous brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law: Patricia Tumulty Flaccus (David) of Portland, Oregon; Joseph Patrick Tumulty, Jr. (Colleen) of Thurmont, Maryland; Alicia Tumulty Peklo (Gary) of West Friendship, Maryland; Anne Tumulty Patsalosavvis (Costas) of Gainesville, Virginia; and Thomas Paul Tumulty (Steve Brown) of Cary, North Carolina. He was uncle to fourteen nieces and nephews and twenty-one grandnieces and grandnephews.
Relatives and friends may call at Dunn’s Funeral Home, 2121 Grand Avenue,Des Moines, Iowa 50312 September on Wednesday, August 9th for visitation from 12:00 to 2:00 p.m. with a service to follow. Refreshments will be served after the service.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wesley on Grand Good Samaritan Fund, 3520 Grand Avenue, Des Moines, IA 50312 or Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research, P.O. Box 5014, Hagerstown, MD 21741.
Posted online on July 26, 2023
Published in Des Moines Register