HOMELAKE — James Edward Magness passed to his eternal reward on Tuesday, June 25, 2013, at Homelake Veteran’s Center in Monte Vista, at the age of 83. Jim was born in Rapid City, South Dakota July 2, 1929, the first son of Clair and Martha Magness.
After moving around the western states during the depression, the Magness family settled in Monte Vista in 1938, where Jim graduated high school in 1948. After graduation, he went to work at the SLV Rural Electric Coop and enlisted in the National Guard. He was called to active duty in 1950. After his discharge in 1951, Jim went back to work at the SLVREC as a lineman and then staking engineer until his retirement in 1993.
Jim was a great dancer and met another great dancer, Wanita Mae Lazenby. They married and danced through life together until her untimely passing in 1997.
After retirement, Jim did the Lord’s work and spent many hours weekly studying the scriptures, counseling at the local jails, spreading the Good News, and offering to help anyone who needed an extra hand or dollar. He was a kind and generous man. He had a great sense of humor and was known to give a little “jazz” to friends and loved ones, and if you were down and out, whatever was his was yours.
He truly lived out the teaching to ‘love thy neighbor.’ Together with his wife, Jim loved to honor Christ in music--playing his zither, harmonica, or spoons, while Wanita sang and accompanied him on the organ. He will be missed greatly.
Jim is preceded in death by his parents and wife, Wanita. He is survived by his wife, Cece, Monte Vista; his sons, Greg (Cathy), of McAllen, Texas, and Tom (Michelle) of Socorro, N.M.; his brother, Tom (Barbara), Monte Vista; sisters Marion Ebel, Albuquerque, N.M.; and Catherine Owens, Minneapolis, Minn.; and several grandchildren, nieces and nephews.
Jim’s desire was to donate his body for the advancement of science. A memorial service is scheduled for Thursday, July 11 at 10 a.m. at the Veteran’s Center at Homelake. His remains will be interred at Homelake Cemetery.