Born on Aug. 24, 1943, in Oswego, New York, James “Jim” Wilson J.D. ’72 was the son of the late Horace (Jack) Wilson and Helen (LaPlant) Wilson. Jim spent his childhood in Minetto, New York, where he loved the outdoors as well as swimming, boating, and fishing in the Oswego River; playing golf, baseball, and ice hockey; and reenacting Robin Hood in the hardwood forest across the street from his home with his friends and his dog, Queenie. Jim graduated from Oswego High School and attended Union College, receiving a degree in economics.  After graduating, he enlisted as an officer in the United States Navy and served three and a half years as a lieutenant on the USS Chipola during the Vietnam War. While in the Navy, Jim met his wife of 50 years, Sharon Lynn Kirkendall, in Honolulu, Hawaii. They married on March 2, 1968, in Newman, California. Jim began practicing law in San Jose and then moved to Merced, California, where he joined the law firm Canelo, Hansen and Wilson in 1978.  He stayed with the firm for 36 years until he retired in 2014. Jim lived life to the fullest through simple pleasures: He was an avid reader, enjoyed going out to coffee and chatting with friends, and loved to travel with his wife, Sharon, exploring new foods and cultures. Jim’s greatest accomplishment, and his heart and joy, was being a loving husband, dad, and Papa. Jim passed away on Feb. 20, 2018, at his home surrounded by his family. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Sharon; his two daughters, Melissa and Jamey (Cory); his three grandchildren, GraceAnn (Gracie), Madelyn (Maddy), and Moe; his great-grandson, Michael (Mikey); and his sister, Lorna Verdone. He will forever be remembered by his family for his wisdom and guidance, his patience, his heart of gold, and the huge, infectious grin he wore so often.

08 Nov 2018