Jimmie passed away peacefully June 10, 2011, at home. He was born on the family farm in Fredonia, N.D., to parents, Edward and Annie (Wolf) LaBrensz, on July 30, 1936. He attended farm schools until moving to Kulm, N.D., where he completed his education. Jimmie enlisted in the U.S. Army in January 1955. He served for 13 months in Thule, Greenland, where he went on an expedition to the Magnetic North Pole. He was honorably discharged in January 1959.
In 1960, Jim moved to the San Francisco, Calif., East Bay area, where he met DeAnna Edwards. They married in Carmel, Calif., on March 2, 1963. In 1966, they moved to Ashland, Ore., with later moves to Hillsboro, Ore., and Salem, Ore. He was employed as a tour bus driver, and drove all of the Canadian Provinces and the United States, except Hawaii. From 1984 to 1998, he and DeAnna owned and operated the Kwik Stop Market in Independence, Ore. He retired in 1998, and moved to Talent, Ore.
Jim was a 35-year member of Keizer, Ore., Elks Lodge #2472, where he served as an officer from 1992 to 1997, including the office of Exalted Ruler. Upon moving to Talent, Ore., he became an associate member of the Ashland Elks Lodge #944, and remained active.
Survivors are his wife, DeAnna; son, Gary (Lorie), of Phoenix, Ore.; brother, Charles (Robin), of Sparks, Nev.; grandchildren, Jessica Williams (J.J.), of Salem, Ore., and Peter Calhoun, of Eagle Point, Ore.; and two great-grandchildren, Makayla Calhoun, of Talent, Ore., and Jarrett Williams, of Salem, Ore. Preceding him in death were his father and mother.
Memorial services will be held at the Keizer Elks Lodge, 4250 Cherry Ave. N.E., Keizer, Ore., on Sunday, July 24, 2011, at 2:00 p.m.
Arrangements are by LitwillerSimonsen Funeral Home, Ashland, Ore. www.litwillersimonsen.com.