Jameson (Jesse) Ireland James
Reno – Our dad, Jameson (Jesse) Ireland James passed gently into heaven on June 20th in Reno, NV surrounded by his loving family. He was born to Henry Peter and Nancy Belle James in Williamson, WV on October 23, 1927.
He led a very rich life. Moving to Chicago as a young boy, he attended Mt. Carmel High School and enlisted into the US Navy at 16. He served his country proudly during WWII upon the storied USS Franklin aircraft carrier in which he survived an air attack in 1945 off the coast of Kyushu, Japan where over 800 men were lost. Jesse was a member of the “Big Ben 704 Club” – a group of survivors who heroically sailed the heavily damaged ship back to New York harbor. After the war, he returned home to Chicago where he began his long career in banking. He met our mother Donna Joy Davis in 1954, and they celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary the day before his passing.
Our father was intrigued by all things Western. He wanted to move west and took a job offer in Reno in 1963 to work for First National Bank as a Loan Officer. He worked in the banking industry for many years until he decided upon a career change and accepted a position with his good friend Rob Allen.
He worked as the General Manager of Robson House Catering Company until he retired.
His years were spent lovingly raising two daughters and spending time with our mom and his four grandchildren. Our dad was extremely well read and was a great source of historical knowledge.
He had a love for dogs, Disneyland, and the outdoors. He loved working with his hands and built our family cabin near Graeagle, CA from the ground up. Spending time there all together was certainly amongst our family’s most cherished memories. He spent many years worshipping with his church family at South Reno Baptist Church. Our dad loved the Reno community and took pride in cooking for the annual Jack T. Reviglio Cioppino Feed to benefit the Boys & Girls Club for over 25 years.
Jesse is survived by our mother Donna and his sister Polly Schwickrath of Tucson, AZ, daughters Linda Anderson and husband John; Diane Prendergast and husband Tom, grandchildren Kimberly Steffen, Jonathan Anderson, and Megan Mortimore Hand, and four great-grandchildren. Jesse will now be joined together with his brother Peter Henry and his grandson Andrew Mortimore.
A family graveside service was held at Mountain View Cemetery.
Our heartfelt gratitude to our dad’s nurse Joan and the entire Renown Hospice team for the care of our dad over the past year. Words cannot express our sincere thanks for your care and compassion
Published in Reno Gazette-Journal on June 30, 2019