On February 13, 2023, God got a good one. Jim passed suddenly with his work boots on, as we all knew he would.
Jim, 79 of Orofino, was the loving son of Edward and Helen (Fuller) McKissick. Jim was born in Twin Falls, ID on April 15, 1943, the only child of Edward and Helen. His father, Ed was killed at Anzio Beachhead in Italy on February 24 1944, during WWII. Jim was 11 months old and unfortunately his father never got to see him.
At the age of 3, Jim’s mother Helen, married Lester Routh, of Twin Falls and gave Jim a little brother David (Dorothy) Routh. Les raised Jim from a young age and when Jim turned 18 he changed his last name to Routh to show his respect for the only man he knew as “Dad”.
Jim grew up in Twin Falls, spending a great deal of time on his Grandparents and other family farms that are still in operation today. He graduated from Twin Falls High School in 1961. He then attended college at U of I and NIC where he studied Forestry. He realized after 2 years, college was not for him and as he put it “It was time for me to go burn diesel”.
At 16 Jim met the love of his life, Dareline Clark, they later married on September 15, 1963. They spent the next 59 years together. In 1965 they had their first child Ed (Belinda) Routh of Orofino, then daughter Traci Routh - Garrett, of Orofino, and another son Dale (Dena) Routh, of Spirit Lake, ID. He was later blessed with six grandchildren, Grant (Lauren), Stella, Ryan (Marilyn), Elicia, Jessica, Billy (Jessica H.), and then with five great grandchildren, Hank, Creek, Audrey, Kane and Duke. Jim had many other children and grandchildren by heart.
Jim drove dump truck, low boy, concrete truck and log truck for several local contractors in the area for about 40 years. He also owned and operated the local auto wrecking yard and towing service in Orofino for many years. In most recent years, many knew him as the “Care Taker” of several local cemeteries. Other skills he was known for include but are not limited to, equipment operator, ranching, farming, fabricating, carpentry and mechanicing.
Jim spent an unbelievable amount of his time and efforts giving back to the community he loved. For several years he built, donated and drove the OCI float, towing it to all the local county fairs in North Idaho. He was an official for Lumberjack Days and helped put on the show. Jim took it upon himself to teach many local youth’s life skills that many of them would have never experienced. Everything from, camping, fishing for the first time, building a fire and cooking on it, or wood working projects and many more. Those lessons were always imbedded with additional teachings, and leading by example, to show the importance of displaying respect for mankind and being a better person. Jim would also donate his time ministering to friends and families during good times or bad, as well as inmates at the local jail and prison. For over 50 years he contributed monies to orphans around the world. His passion and dedication to serve the Lord was evident in his every action. As anyone who knew him, he always had big smile on his face, and lended a hand to anyone that was in need.
As a loving husband, brother, father, grandfather, great grandfather and best friend to many, Jim will truly be missed by everyone that was blessed by the opportunity to meet him.
A Celebration of Life was held at the Big Eddy Marina on Saturday, Feb. 18.
Donations in Jim’s name may be made to the Idaho Youth Ranch, 1609 N Government Way, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83814 or www.youthranch.org/givenow (208) 972-5307 and/or St Jude’s Children’s Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.
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