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James A Shurts
07/16/1942 — 08/12/2022
From Richland, WA | Born in Ontario, OR
James A Shurts
Jim Shurts, 80, of Richland, passed away peacefully at home with his wife and daughters by his side, after a courageous battle with a rapidly progressing illness.
Jim was born in Ontario, Oregon to Mary and Everett Shurts and grew up on the family dairy farm in New Plymouth, Idaho. Upon graduation from New Plymouth High School, he enlisted in the Navy. After his service he graduated from University of Idaho with a degree in Chemistry. Jim worked his entire career in the nuclear industry in Richland, until he happily retired to pursue his many interests. Jim was a marathon runner and avid outdoorsman. He put his chemistry skills to work brewing craft beer and making wine. He planted Squirrely Dog Vineyard in his backyard and produced his own wine from grape to bottle. Jim was always learning and never did anything halfway. He volunteered with the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, the Richland Police Department, and with many other outdoor causes.
Jim is survived by the great love of his life, Cheryl, his wife of 53 years, of Richland; his daughters Michelle Wittreich (Curt) of West Richland, Melinda Roulston (Tom) of Blacksburg, VA, Allison Bihary (Terry) of Dallas, GA, and Jamie Harper (Mike) of Soldotna, AK; twelve grandchildren; Jaret (Erica), Karissa (Chris), Monica, Tyler, Jacob (Tessa), Hayley, Whitney (Eddie), Kendra, Maddie, Noah, Adam, and Jack; and five great grandchildren, Kjersti, Chloe, Lukas, Markus, and Jackson; his sisters Joanie (Pat), and Helen; and by many nieces and nephews. Jim had lifetime best friends; Don Hill, who survives him, and Cliff St. John, who recently passed away. The three Pards had countless adventures together.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents; brothers Don and Tom; sisters Lois and Peg; and his beloved dog Bella.
He was a member of Christ the King Catholic Church and received Last Rites at home before his passing. Jim requested that no formal service be held; instead raise a glass and live life to the fullest. He wanted us to remember he “loved his family, friends, good beer and wine and the great outdoors”. Those who wish to make memorial donations may do so to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation or Pheasants Forever.
I only knew Jim through the local chapter of RMEF, his dedication and hard work always impressed me, I feel that I was lucky to have known and work with Jim on the RMEF committee. I was so sorry to hear of his passing.
They don’t make guys like this anymore. I had only known Jim about 2-years before his passing and I really enjoyed getting to know him as he worked to “school” me on the art of wine making. As we got to know each other, it was apparent that we shared many hobbies and passions beyond just the wine. I am sorry that our paths didn’t cross 40 years before….although, one view would say it may have been for the best, as we probably never would have been at the dinner table on time. It was a joy to have known him; rest-in-peace Jim.
Jim was a wonderful manager, fair and. kind.
Jim was one of the most liked & loved person you would ever want to meet. I knew Jim from my work at Exxon He always had a smile for you when we passed in the hallway. Jim, you will be sorely missed. Until we meet again, R.I.P.
I got to know Jim through my husband who worked with him at Exxon Nuclear in Richland, Washington. We all had a lot in common, hiking, fishing, and backpacking. Jim and my husband worked together in the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation (RMEF) Club. Jim incorporated my help during the Fund Raising events which I was always part of. I always enjoyed Jim’s friendship during all the fun gatherings with our local friends. He will always be missed and never forgotten.
Jim was a very good friend of mine and he will be sorely missed.
Cheryl (and family),
So very sorry for your loss of such a wonderful man. I didn’t know him well but enjoyed our interactions. He was volunteer extraordinaire with the Tri City Wine Society at festival time. Only volunteer I had who did a fabulous job with no training or guidance. He just showed up and did what needed to be done. I will raise a glass in his memory tonight.