At first it seemed like a printed obituary for Jim would be wasted, as most of his friends are unable to read. But Jim could read and if he were still here, he would probably be reading this, as he loved to look for obituaries in the newspaper. He started looking after his favorite uncle who was killed in an automobile accident when Jim was just entering his teens. Jim started reading when his older brothers Richard and Blaine brought home words their teachers had written on oak tag. We taped the words to the table, chair, window etc. and if they fell down Jim put them back in the right place. He also learned to recognize his name on toys that belonged to him and to his younger brother, Neil and sister, Trish. And Jim could recognize things that were too complicated or deep for words.
No one could possibly hug “hello” more thoroughly than Jim. He didn’t like prolonged goodbyes, because he was always ready for the next activity that he had planned. When his brothers and sister grew up and left home, Jim wanted to go, too. He called the other guys in his group home “home mates” and made great friends. Jim called the people who worked at the group home “my staff”. He called the other people with Down Syndrome “look alikes” He also liked the others at his sheltered workshop and loved to go to work.
Jim loved parties, holidays and vacation times, probably because then people have time to be together.
Jim spent some time at the Body Donor Program at the U of U. The family will honor his life with a private Graveside Service where he will be laid to rest next to his uncle in the Brigham City Cemetery. He loved to go there and suggested that we take a picnic there to share with his uncle and grandparents. There is beautiful evergreen tree shading the area. A warning, though, if you go watch out for the sprinkler it can suddenly come your way. If you got wet, Jim would find that amusing.
We love you Jim. But for certain if you were told “I love you” you would probably say as you so often have said, “I knew that already”.
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