Jim was born on December 12, 1941 to Grant Wilson and Hazel Audrey Oakes in Chicago, IL. and died on December 26, 2015. He completed the family, which included his brother, Grant, and sister, Marilyn. When he was 12 the family moved to Southern California where he graduated from Santa Ana High School in 1959. He married Barbara Henderson in 1964 and moved to Jacksonville, OR in 1971.

Always one to tinker with anything mechanical, he entered the apprentice program for International Harvester and after completing the program took over managing their service department in Downey. He would spend the next 42 years in the truck service field; including Webfoot Truck and Equipment and USF Reddaway in Medford where he retired in 2003.

He was involved in his community, Jacksonville, serving on Historic Architectural Review Commission, the Booster Club, and welcomed young and old alike as Father Christmas during the Victorian Christmas celebrations. He was a member of Jacksonville Presbyterian Church and helped in the building of their new facility. He also sat on the advisory board for the diesel program of Rogue Community College. He loved to travel and fish and enjoyed many hours on the water away from ringing phones.

He is survived by his wife, Barbara of Jacksonville, his brother, Grant (Sylvia) Oakes and sister, Marilyn Higday, of West Linn, OR, his sister-in-law Shirley (Glen) Gellatly of Laguna Beach, CA, and numerous nieces, nephews and dear friends . Services will be held Saturday, January 23 at 1:00 pm, at Jacksonville Presbyterian Church, 405 Middle Street, Jacksonville, OR. Donations may be made in his honor to Jacksonville Presbyterian Church, PO Box 697, Jacksonville, OR 97530.