His family moved to Salmon Creek in 1941 and built a shingle mill, which they ran for many years.
Jim got his driver's license at the age of 14 in order to drive his schoolteacher aunt and himself to school in Miranda. He attended local schools before going to work at Morrison and Jackson's mill on Salmon Creek.
Other than raising a few sheep he spent his entire life in the lumber industry. His passions (other than family and friends) were fishing, hunting and working at one thing or another. Even when he was weak and ill he would bring in a stick or two of wood for the fire.
He was a lifetime member of the NRA and an avid hunter and fisherman with some of his favorite memories being the month of June at Shelter Cove and the many hunting and fishing trips to various states with family and friends and his precious fox terriers.
Survivors include high school sweetheart and wife of 61 years, Helen; his children and their significant others: Mike Swortzel (Lynda) of Conner, Mont.; Carol Salomon (Chris) of Miranda; Jimmy and Angie Swortzel of Copper Center, Alaska; and son-in-law Fred Salomon of Santa Rosa; grandchildren, Jason (Heather) Salomon, Leland (Crystal) Salomon both of Miranda, "Muggy" Moser of Redway, Bret Swortzel, Sabrina Boschee of Rio Dell, Calif., Seth Parker of Homer, Alaska, Eli (Melissa) Swortzel of Miranda and Lacey Swortzel of Benham Springs, La.; great-grandchildren, Dustyn, Madisyn, Gavyn, Regina, Leland, Billy and Trinity; sister, Marlene Lyons of Fortuna, Calif.; and too many nieces and nephews to list.
Jim also leaves behind special angel and longtime friend, Susan Olsen. The family could not have survived this sad time without her love, help and support. He also leaves lifelong friends Charles and Janice Campbell, Gilbert and Marge Wallan, Larry Burgh, Carolyn Roscoe-Clark, Kirk Moras, John and Terri Hicks, Mark and Heidi Kavajecz, and Wade Harvey and Diana.
Jim went home to see those who preceded him including parents, Budd and Henrietta Swortzel; brother-in-law, J.D. Lyons; numerous in-laws, special friends and sporting partners, E. James Knox and Bill Bushnell.
Special thanks to one of our "angels," Jill, and the crew of hospice, Angela Murray, Dr. Rosa Rangel; and Robert Johnson (Fortuna Pharmacy).
There will be no funeral services as was his wish but there will be a celebration of life at a later date. Notice will be given in the local papers. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to Heart of the Redwoods Community Hospice in Garberville or your favorite charity.
Arrangements were under the care of Goble's Fortuna Mortuary, Fortuna.