Hawthorne, James Bruce (Jim)
October 14th 1943 – June 4th 2014
Jim, the youngest of three boys, was born in Tulare, California to Felix and Andrine Hawthorne. As a child his family moved to northern BC and ultimately settled in Kelowna where Jim grew up. He also spent time at the family cabin on Westside Road. After high school Jim moved to Vancouver and attended BCIT, where he completed his training and became a Journeyman Electrician. In 1966, while working in Hope, he met the love of his life, Elaine, and they were later married in 1968. They had three children and after living in Creston, Penticton and Kamloops, they settled in Vernon in 1977. Jim worked for over 20 years at the Vernon Jubilee Hospital, both as the Head Electrician and Superintendent, overseeing the electrical component of the expansion in the 1980s. He retired in 2004.
Jim was a very caring individual, always willing to lend a hand and to help out. He had a reputation of being a problem solver, able to build or fix anything and he was often referred to as MacGyver. Many people have shared stories of how Jim helped them or what he built or fixed … that was just Dad. He was gifted with a unique set of skills and abilities. He lived life to the fullest. He water skied at the national level and was an avid snowboarder; boarding just this last season at the age of 70! Jim was content with the simpler things in life. It wasn’t about what he had or did; his happiness was found in spending time with family or in helping others. Simple accomplishments made him proud; he was kind and humble. He loved to be busy, he provided, he puttered, he built, he created, he planted, he fixed and repaired and made things for the people he loved and cared about. He was a doer, a finisher, a follow-through kind of guy. He enjoyed feeding the birds and walking with Elaine, enjoying the beauty of their park-like yard; the birds, flowers and the trees. Jim loved watching his grandchildren’s many activities; he doted on his Springer Spaniels, Bart and Spice, and took pleasure in spending time at the summer cabin.
Jim was a devoted husband to his wife Elaine, father to Rex (Melissa), Cheryl (Marc-André) and Mark (Nicole) and grandfather to Makayla, Reece, Maxim, Nicholas, Isabelle, Ava and Ella. He is survived by his older brother Ron (Reba) of Cocolalla, Idaho. He will be deeply missed by all.
We struggle to find words to sum up our father’s life. He was a man of great integrity and values. He could build or fix anything. We are immensely grateful for the time we had with him and we will miss the conversations, the advice, the help; above all, being able to spend more time with him. Dad was a role model who taught us life lessons by doing. Whatever he did, he did to the best of his ability and what he started, he finished. We will miss his smile, his patience and his unconditional love; husband, father, friend and confidant.
It is in his final words to us that we best find peace…
“Don’t feel sad or anything like that, be happy for me as I’ve had a good life and I’m happy that I’ve
had all these good years. I love you all and I’m glad that you have all been a big part of my life.”
Love Jim Hawthorne
There will be a celebration of Jim’s life at the family residence, 6455 Goose Lake Road, on Sunday, June 22nd, from 1:00-4:00 pm. All are welcome to walk the yard and see some of Jim’s handiwork; an expression of Dad and who he was.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, donations can be made in Jim Hawthorne’s memory to:
• The B.C. Prader-Willi Syndrome Association, www.bcpwsa.com/membership
or by contacting: Heather Beach, president BCPWSA (604) 339-9718
• Silver Star Adaptive Snow Sports, www.ssass.bc.ca or mail donations to:
Silver Star Adaptive Snow Sports, PO Box 534, Vernon, BC, V1T 6M4