James was born on September 10, 1939 at Emanuel Hospital in Portland. He attended Portland School and graduated from Lincoln High School before receiving a Bachelor of Science degree from Portland State University.
His father was a deputy sheriff and was killed while on duty in Idaho. He was raised, as an only child, by his mother, Ruby. Needless to say his childhood was challenging. James spent a some of his youth growing up on a family farm. For a short period of time he lived on the famous Portland holiday lane - - - Peacock Lane.
James received a letter from his uncle - - - Uncle Sam and then spent two years serving with loyalty and honor in the United States Army from 1962 through 1964 in Korea.
As we reflect on the service of one of our veterans, it is a sober reminder of the thousands upon thousands of Americans who were willing to make the supreme sacrifice to our preserve freedom. Today, as we pause to honor James, we also thank the men and women who are serving, and have served, with honor to keep us free.
His life charged forever when he met a young lady, Judy. They were married in 1964 and blessed with their only daughter, Tara arrived in a few years later. She said, she so appreciated them adopting her and loving her as they did. He is lovingly remembered as a good and supportive dad. James and his son-in-law Steve were close.
Professionally, James was a General Contractor. He was employed by Portland Public Schools in the maintenance division for seventeen years. He also had worked with the Vancouver Public School District.
Speaking about fond memories, it was shared that James was artistic and enjoyed spending time designing stain glass windows. He enjoyed doing ceramics and sharing at bazaars. James enjoyed his MG sports car and visited Europe in 1967 with his wife Judy.
In 1977 he bought a farm house in Newberg and remodeled it. He purchased land in LaPine, OR several years ago, and slept in the bed of his pickup as he, by himself, built the cabin that he so cherished.
He was careful with his money. He had a standing joke with the tellers at the bank that, he was dropping in to check on his money.
He had a tender heart and loved animals. He was always open to adopting a dog or cat when it needed a loving home. You all remember his love for “Bee-Bee.” He is fondly remembered as a hard worker who had a willingness to always help. Seldom was he ever idle. James enjoyed spending time at the Newberg Senior Center playing cribbage and being involved with the exercise group.
James stayed in contact with others. If he had not heard from a family member or neighbor in a couple of days he was calling them to see if they were alright.
He gave back to his community. For nearly twenty years he volunteered with “Faith in Action.” He would transport others to their appointments and serve d as a handy man when required. He volunteered with the American Red Cross during their blood drives. He enjoyed fighting for the underdog as he understood what they were going through.
He discovered that he had 4 half-brothers. Three of them preceded him in death.
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