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Sandra M James
(July 22, 1947 - December 4, 2012)

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Sandra M James

On Tuesday, December 4, 2012, Sandra Mickelsen James departed this life. Sandy is survived by her husband, Jimmie Gurney James; her daughters Michelle Anne (David) Connolly of Alameda, CA, and Angela Rae (J.R.) Tupper of Rigby, ID.; her brother Michael Peter (Cathie) Mickelsen of Boise, ID.; four grandchildren Justin, Cassandra, Rayana and Jack, and many nephews and nieces. Born July 22, 1947 in Rexburg, Idaho, the only daughter of Max Brothersen and Margaret Ricks Mickelsen. Sandy was a fisherman from an early age. She enjoyed weekend trips to the cabin at the Rexburg Boat Club on Island Park Reservoir, where she would fish on the end of the dock with her Dad. In one instance, she hooked a fish on the line so big that it almost pulled her five year old frame into the lake for an afternoon swim. Luckily, Sandy won out. In 1958, Sandy moved to Sugar City, Idaho, with her Mother, brother and step-father, Glen Laudwick Pincock. Sandy and Glen had a wonderful relationship and shared a love for animals. As a teenager, she was a member of the Teton Rough Riders Junior riding club with her old, trusty horse, Punch. Sandy graduated from Sugar-Salem High School in the spring of 1965, before leaving home to attend Idaho State University (ISU) in Pocatello. While studying at ISU she worked as a reader for Jimmie James. This was a fortuitous opportunity for them because they married on November 13, 1969. Sandy and Jim returned to Challis Idaho which would remain their home for the rest of her life. She served her community in many capacities over the next 43 years: music teacher with Jim 1970-72, Sherriff’s office 1973-81 and Cypress Mine 1981-92. Over the years she dedicated 16 years of community service with the EMT’s and National Diversity councils. In 1993 she and Jim fulfilled a lifelong dream of operating their own business and opened Jimbo’s Quality Car Care where they worked side by side, or rather top and bottom, to provide outstanding customer service. When Jim decided to retire, Sandy was elected by the community to Custer County Treasurer and then re-elected in 2010. Here she served until her premature death. She fought very hard to defeat the unexplainable illnesses that overcame her body. In August 2012, she and Jim traveled to California with their daughter to work with doctors, therapists and trainers that could aid in her recovery. There they remained until November when Sandy wanted to return home to her beloved mountain valley and spend time with family and friends. She had a big compassionate heart, always putting others before herself. Sandy was preceded in death by her father, Max, in 1956; step-father, Glen, in 2002; and her mother, Margaret in 2009. For over 40 years Sandy and Jim performed at funerals and graveside services for loved members of their community, even in the snow and rain. It is at her request that no funeral service be held, but rather a celebration of her life is being planned for her birthday in July, 2013. Her final wishes are that in lieu of flowers or food, donations in her memory can be made to the Challis EMT’s (PO Box 24, Challis), the Challis Senior Center or the St. Lukes Hospital in Twin Falls, Idaho. Arrangements were under the direction of the Jones & Casey Funeral Home of Challis, Idaho.

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