James Robert Brunner
James Robert Brunner, of Medford, Ore., died peacefully at home on Friday, January 7, 2011. He was born on October 3, 1918, in Coffeyville, Kans., to Harry and Margaret Brunner, and graduated from Colorado State College in 1941, with a degree in range management.
Jim served with the 17th Field Artillery Observation Battalion, landing in Normandy and ending up in Czechoslovakia, at the end of the war. After his discharge as a first lieutenant in 1946, he worked in west Texas as a farm manager and for the Soil Conservation service. There, he met Murl Murrell
Hancock Shedd, and her son, Doug. They married in 1949, and together they had a son, Bret.
Moving to Nevada, Jim began a career as a range management specialist with the Bureau of Land Management ending in the Arizona district office, where he married Jean Hicks. Upon retirement he moved several times around the west before settling in Medford.
Jim began a second career as an author, and wrote many works of fiction and non-fiction. He was particularly proud of his technical handbook for hands on land managers
entitled, "The Wildland Workers Handbook." Jim was active in the Medford Writers Group, the Kiwanis Club and
continued to be very active in the Society for Range
Management. He was an active member of the First
Presbyterian Church, where he enjoyed flipping lots of
pancakes. Through all these activities, he made many close and enduring friendships.
In 2005, over the back fence, Jim met Mae Hall, his wife and soul mate. Mae brought great joy to Jim's life, and her family, the Halls, Parks, and Hardys, showed much kindness and love to him. Mae and Jim thoroughly enjoyed each other's company, until her death in December 2010.
Jim is survived by his son, Bret (Susan), of Helena, Mont.; grandson, Jesse (Erica) Brunner and their son, Henry, of Moscow, Idaho; grandson, Jacob Brunner and his fianc,
Kasha, their son, Aidan, of Helena, Mont.; his stepson, Doug (Ariel) Hancock, of Tucson, Ariz.; and his nephews, Roger and Ken Williams.
A memorial service will be held at the First Presbyterian Church, 85 S. Holly St, Medford, Ore., on Tuesday, January 11, 2011, at 2:00 p.m. A reception will follow at the church. A private family memorial will be held later in Montana.
Memorials may be made to Providence Hospice, the First Presbyterian Church or a charity of choice.