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JAMES W. (JIM) ROUTLEDGE (published on August 30, 2008)

JAMES W. (JIM) ROUTLEDGE James W. (Jim) Routledge died peacefully on Monday, August 25, 2008 with his children by his side at the Hamiota District Health Center in Hamiota, Manitoba. He was born on March 4, 1930 to Jack and Lois (Anderson) Routledge in the Rural Municipality of Woodworth. Jim married Jane Rachel Jessie Lorimer on March 7, 1959 in Souris. They farmed together for three decades in Oakner, Manitoba where they raised four children, Elaine, Paul, Suzie and Ron before moving to Hamiota. The United Church played a prominent role in the couple's life, where they both worshiped and served. They had met in 1953 at a United Church Young Peoples Conference, which began a five-decade friendship and partnership. Jim later served as the treasurer in the Assiniboine Presbytery, as an elder in both the Oakner and Hamiota United Churches, and sang in both of their senior choirs. Over the years, he was involved in the Oakner School Board and as the secretary treasurer of the Oakner Pool Board. Jim was also a 4-H Leader, member of the Hamiota Fair Board and a tireless volunteer with Communities in Bloom, making his own yard and other spots around town a competitive advantage for Hamiota in earning and defending its top ranking. His inquisitiveness and curiosity found an outlet through his involvement in the Manitoba Genealogical Society, for which he transcribed area cemetery and church records. He also volunteered with Hamiota Museum and the Hamiota District Archives. Jim's greatest joys were his children and grandchildren, by whom he is survived: Elaine (Paul) Taylor, Paul (Diane) Alyssa and Kaylee Routledge, Suzie (Ian) Scott, Ron (Pattie) Jack and Eve Routledge. (He was also known to gleefully spoil and tease the many grand dogs and cats that came along over the years.) He is also survived by nephews and nieces, Brenda (Scott) Gerrand and family; Kevin (Cindy) Routledge; Cathy (Dennis) Lonsdale; Karen (Brian) Hopley and family; Cheryl Ann (Don) Tufts and family; Ross (Maria) Spratt; Colleen (Dave) Wozney; sister-in-law Shirley (Glen) Spratt; and many cousins. He is also survived by a special friend, Jeannine Harrison. Jim was predeceased by his wife Rachel; brother Ivan Routledge and his wife Mary; parents, Jack and Lois Routledge and parents-in-law Jim and Jessie (Lovatt) Lorimer. In addition to a lifetime of church and community involvement, Jim was pleased that the farm had remained in the family through its sale to eldest son Paul. He was well loved as a gentle gentleman, including by the students of the Hamiota schools where he served as a custodian for 17 years until poor health forced his retirement. In 1995, the staff and students of the Hamiota Elementary School celebrated his 65th birthday with an assembly and party. In thanking them, Jim urged the students not to wish their lives away. It was a memorable lesson, as the family was reminded just days ago, when one of those students now working and raising a family of her own said she will never forget the advice, or him. A funeral service for Jim was conducted at the Hamiota United Church on Thursday, August 28, 2008 at 2:00 p.m., with an interment following at the Scotia Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Hamiota United Church Memorial Fund, Hamiota, Manitoba, R0M 0T0 or the Hamiota District Health Center Foundation Special Bed Fund, PO Box 671, Hamiota, Manitoba, R0M 0T0. Campbell Funeral Home is in care of arrangements. (866) 620-2744

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