James R. Brooks (87) passed away July 9, 2018 in Ferron, Utah.
Jim (as called by his adult friends, Jimmy to his childhood friends and James to anyone else who claimed they knew him, but really didn't) was born in January of 1931 in a nursing home at Port Huron Michigan. He was the only child of his deceased parents Floyd J. Brooks and Dorothy V. Bengs.
Jim recalled moving to the Copper Country of (Upper Peninsula) Michigan in August of 1936 just after his parents acquired their first car, a 1936 Chevrolet Deluxe.
As a child, Jim grew quite fond of cats as family pets. He maintained that liking for cats his whole life, but he never developed the same liking for dogs.
In the summer of 1937 he moved to his family owned home in Laurium, Michigan. He had lots of close friends as a child of whom he kept in contact with over the years. He spoke often of his dearest childhood friends, Bob and Don Masnado, Paul Abramson, Earl Messner and Ronald Adams.
As a child Jim and his friends spent a great deal of time bouncing around the Copper Country exploring the local mines and whatever else boys of their age could get into. These childhood adventures would lead Jim to his calling as a geologist a short time later.
He often spent his summers at the "family" farm near Aberdeen, South Dakota. It was another important time in his life that set values and work ethic into stone; as well, in about 1940 his cousin Bud taught him to drive. His time at the farm was mostly responsible his mechanical talent. There was nothing he could not fix or build.
He developed a great interest in firearms during his early teens, which continued throughout the rest of his life. He often went target practicing with his family and anyone else who could hold a handgun and pull the trigger.
When he was a child, he gained interest in flying as a result of a pilot who landed a bi-plane in an empty field and proceeded to give rides to the kids. Later in May of 1951 he saved his money and decided he would learn to fly. He later joined the Civil Air Patrol as a pilot and flew on a number of search and rescue missions. He also did considerable flying for a Baptist group called Wings for Christ which flew missionaries into various isolated communities for Sunday service. Sometime in 1969, he became interested in aerobatics and took aerobatics training of which he became quite daring and proficient at.
He graduated from Michigan Tech University in 1952, was drafted by the military in December 12, 1952 where he was inducted into the army at Jacksonville, Florida; he was then sent to Fort Jackson, South Carolina. During his military stint, he was stationed in Austria for an unforgettable tour of culture and scenery.
After his military tour, he attended the South Dakota School of Mines at Rapid City, South Dakota in 1954. He graduated and earned a masters degree in Geology. While there, he discovered and named the Brooks' Cave.
On January 15, 1956 he began work for Colorado Fuel and Iron (CF&I) at the Sunrise Mine in Wyoming. This began his passion for mineralogy and one of his great loves of life.
Connie and Jim were married on June 19, 1956. Soon after, they began their family consisting of three children (Linda, Dorothy and Karl); they eventually they moved to Scottsdale AZ. In 1974, they moved to Pueblo, Colorado where their last child, Owen was born. The next 60 years were filled with so many memories it would be impossible to pen them all. Jim would agree; his life was rich and fulfilling.
Jim retired from CF&I July 22, 1983. Not to be idle, he applied to the Maryland Geological Survey and was offered the position of Economic Geologist. He reported to work on March 23, 1984. In September of 1990 Jim retired a second time.
Jim and Connie remained in Pueblo, Colorado and summered in Laurium, Michigan after their retirement years, which allowed them to travel the world to places like Machu Picchu, Egypt and Mexico.
As age crept upon Jim and Connie, they were recently being cared for by their daughter Linda in Ferron, Utah.
Jim is survived by his wife Connie (married 62 years), his children; Linda White, Dorothy Gricius, Karl Brooks, Owen Brooks, numerous grandchildren and great grandchildren. Jim had a full and prosperous life; he will be missed a great deal.
Care has been entrusted to Fausett Mortuary. Family and friends may sign the online guestbook and share a memory of Jim at www.fausettmortuary.com
Thoughts and remembrances can be sent to;
C/O Jim and Connie Brooks
Ferron, UT 84523