Jim was a rare and exceptional man who lived his entire life in laughter, joy and happiness. His contagious smile, humor and cheerfulness touched all who knew him. He was profoundly loved by family and friends, and is deeply missed.
  • 79 years old
  • Born on February 19, 1940 in Sioux City, Iowa, United States.
  • Passed away on July 9, 2019 in Bend, Oregon, United States.

James Edward Parks, of Bend, Oregon passed away peacefully on July 9, 2019, at St. Charles hospital.  He was 79 years old.

Jim was born in 1940 in Sioux City, Iowa to Vernice and Clifford Parks, the second of six children.  The family moved to California and later Woodburn, Oregon.  Jim started his first job at 13 years old, working a full time schedule before and after school to help support his family.  He graduated from Woodburn High School in 1957 and served five and a half years in the United States Air Force, beginning in 1958 at the age of 17. During his time in the Air Force, Jim was stationed in Lackland AFB Texas and Elmendorf AFB Alaska.  Jim was very proud of his service in the Air Force, and worked a number of jobs related to recreational services, including running bowling alleys, fishing camps, being a Master of Ceremonies, and rocking it as a disc jockey.

After Jim’s discharge from the military he began work at Sunset Lanes in Beaverton, Oregon in 1963. Jim purchased an Atlantic Richfield service station in Hillsboro in 1965, and sold it for a second location in Portland two years later.  He sold his service station in 1970 to spend more time with his family. Over the course of the next 35 years Jim worked in maintenance, shop and materials management at Allis Chalmers, Cobb Rock, Lone Star Northwest, JWP Mechanical and DynaElectric.  Jim retired in 2006.

Jim met his wife, Carol Lucielle Hein in 1963 at Sunset Lanes where they both worked. Carol worked in the Cafe’, and Jim worked on the pin setting machines.  In 1966 they married in the Lutheran church in Beaverton, Oregon, and honeymooned in Hawaii, after Jim convinced Carol to pack and prepare for a honeymoon week on the Oregon coast, but instead drove to the airport so they could fly to Honolulu.  Jim and Carol lived in Aloha, Oregon until moving to Banks in 1969. They raised two sons on seven acres in Banks, and moved to Bend, Oregon in 2014.

Jim loved people, family gatherings, animals, the rodeo and most of all his six granddaughters.  He tirelessly doted on and bragged about all of them, and lived every day to tease, joke and laugh with them. 

Jim was an exceptionally cheerful and friendly man, and was a friend to almost everyone he met. Since moving to Bend, Jim spent his free time volunteering at the Humane Society and making hundreds of turtle shaped footstools which he wouldn’t sell.  “I don’t sell them - I only give them away to people I like.” Every new acquaintance Jim met was offered a turtle.

Jim is survived by his wife of 53 years, Carol; his son Corey, wife Michelle, daughters Audrey, Gabriella, Lillian and Jocelyn, and step-sons Parker and Cabot Holm; his son Gregory, wife Andrea, and daughters Jordin and Morgin; and his sister Marta Burdge.

There will not be a memorial service. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions may be made to the Humane Society of Central Oregon - Jim’s favorite charity.  https://www.hsco.org/

See pictures of Jim and leave comments as a tribute at the following site: https://www.forevermissed.com/james-edward-parks/#about

Posted by Myrl Svela on July 29, 2019
Jim was our favorite employee at Sunset Lanes, and he stayed in touch with us off and on for many years. He would stop by after work an any given day and we would laugh and talk about old times. Sleep well, dear Jim, and may all these tributes help to comfort Carol and family in the coming days. 
  Myrl Svela
Posted by Josie Parks on July 25, 2019
Never have I met a man with such a good heart and the best intentions for everyone he met. Every time I would see him, a smile would always be on my face because of his playful teasing and contagious laugh. Papa's smile was the happiest I've ever seen, completely genuine. I will forever miss his kind soul and him constantly striving to share & spread his happiness. I still sit on the blue turtle he crafted just for me as if it's a chair rather than a footrest- just like I did when he first gave it to me. I will always remember when we volunteered at the Humane Society; we'd drive there in his blue truck with the windows you actually had to roll down (which I loved). Seeing him interact with the dogs was amazing, I'd never see someone care about animals as much as he did. His shared his soul with every person and animal he met and I hope to be as gentle a person as he was. I miss him with my whole heart.
I love you and am always thinking about you Papa, Jos
Posted by Alicia Blank on July 22, 2019
Jim Parks was a positive role model to everyone. His integrity, kindness, welcoming smile, intelligence, character, honesty…actually, there are not enough words to describe what a great man he was. 
I had the privilege of being his sister-in-law, even though I thought of him more as a brother from another mother. He was always there to help if you needed it.
Over the years I have truly enjoyed his company whenever our families got together. He always made me feel welcome in his home.
Jim was who I asked to walk me down the aisle at my wedding to Gary in 1978. He made every situation so enjoyable with his humor and wit! 
I have so many wonderful memories of Jim that I will cherish forever. You are loved and will be missed Jim Parks.
Posted by Lora Hein -sexton on July 20, 2019
Ah, yes, Nebraska....I remember the pool ..uncle Jim was quite the character. He went out of his way to entertain us.
What I remember about that trip that sticks in my mind was the 105 degree weather and the sun burn I got and the huge alie plant they used to cover it with and I believe dad set up mine and Greg's tent on a ant hill that first night...lol
Posted by Myrna Hein on July 20, 2019
Jim was just an all around wonderful person who always had a smile on his face and a funny comment that would bring a smile to yours. He was always willing to offer to help or give advice if there was any problem. He was a great uncle to our kids who all remember him with love and of course, smiles and laughter. Although we weren't physically in touch much over the last several years he was always here in our hearts as was his whole family. He will always live there.
Posted by David Kemper on July 18, 2019
We had such good time with Jim and Carol during baseball season at Banks. Prayers for you and your family.
Dave & Laura Kemper
Posted by Patricia Friel on July 18, 2019
We are so sorry to hear of Jim's passing. He was a special person, always happy with a big beautiful smile on his face. He will always have a special place in our hearts.
Gene & Patty Friel
Posted by Lori Cline on July 16, 2019
Jim was a wonderful friend & neighbor! His smile Was contagious. Such a thoughtful man. Always ready to help with a project.  His kindness will never be forgotten. He will always have a place in our hearts. Lori and Bob Cline
Posted by Gabriella Parks on July 15, 2019
Eternally grateful to have had a Papa as wonderful as mine - never have I met anyone as kind, gentle, caring, honest, and sincere as him. He was endlessly hard working, providing for his family, serving his country, and spreading joy to strangers, friends, and family effortlessly. Everyone who knew him instantly loved him. After all, how do you not love a man who is pure light in human form? I will forever strive to bring light into other people's lives the way he brought light into mine.
To Papa-
I am reminded of all the beautiful and wonderful things I have been lucky to experience with you so far in my 19 years - sunshine and kindness to strangers and Werther's hard caramels and treehouses and horseback riding and playful teasing and selflessness and chocolate and hand crafting and uncontrollable laughter - and am thankful, because you taught me how to appreciate these things.
So, to the sweetest man I have ever and likely will ever meet - I love you, I love you, I love you.
Posted by Mike Woodle on July 15, 2019
Our hearts are heavy for you, and our prayers are with you.Uncle Jim, and Aunt Carol were always good to me when I was a young kid. He will truly be missed.  With Love, Michael Hein
Posted by Butch Hein on July 15, 2019
Jim was so many things, cowboy, cattleman, businessman, loyal employee, and a damn good brother- in- law to me. Never saw him without a smile on his face.  Miss you!
Posted by Nelson Appell on July 14, 2019
I am so sorry to hear this. My condolences. Jim was one of the best people I ever knew. I lived with Jim and Carol and Corey (and Greg, who, by the way, the water balloon incident has NOT been forgotten) in Banks, OR in the summers when I was in college. I really appreciated their hospitality, and I seek to do the same as I raise my kids. The summer Jim was laid off was such a great summer - I've never seen a man commit himself to conquering a video game like Jim committed to solving Mario Brothers. Corey and I couldn't convince him to play any other games, but he loved Mario Brothers.... I took one of these turtles of his home and it sits in my bedroom, currently wearing a Harry Potter Sorting Hat. I loved his reasoning for why he refused money for the turtles - if he took money, then it would be a job, and he wasn't looking for another job.
Posted by Jennifer Gunderson on July 15, 2019
Some of my favorite childhood memories are of visits to Aunt Carol and Uncle Jim’s house! I always remember Uncle Jim happy, smiling, joking and fun to be around.  So sorry for your loss.  We love and miss you all and will keep you in our thoughts and prayers.
Posted by Becky Lewis on July 14, 2019
Carol, Corey & Greg,
Randy and I are so sorry to hear about Jim. My only thought when I think about him is that he was just simply a "sweet" man. Always had a smile on his face. We will be thinking about you and offering up some prayers as well.
Randy & Becky Lewis
Posted by Corey Parks on July 14, 2019
I am very heartbroken to share the news of my Dad's passing. He was the best father Greg and I could have asked for, an amazing grandfather to our six girls, a wonderful husband of 53 years to our Mom, and a cheerful and terrific friend to everyone he met. If he knew you, he liked you.

This memorial page is for friends and family to please post any thoughts you want to share (see below).

Our Family spent the past four days talking about all of the entertaining things Dad said and did over the course of his life. He was a remarkably happy man, and one whose love for other people shined through in almost every conversation he had with and about everyone. There really aren't enough words to express how much we loved Dad, what he meant to our lives, and how much we will miss him.

If you'd like to honor my Dad Jim by doing something he would support, spend time with your loved ones this weekend. Remind those loved ones what they mean to you and be thankful for every minute you have together. Our whole family is tremendously thankful for the privilege of knowing and loving this man, and for all the time we had together - it was a true blessing.

I love my Dad.

Leave a Tribute