James Ernest Wilke
August 26, 1925 – January 2, 2019
WILKE, James (Jim) Ernest
Born in Spokane, WA on August 26, 1925; passed away January 2, 2019, in Davenport, WA. He grew up in Davenport, WA. He quit school during his senior year and joined the United States Marine Corps. Jim proudly served for 3 years (1942-1945) in the South Pacific, earning a Purple Heart. After getting out of the Marines, he returned home to Davenport, married Audrey Edwards, and went to work for the Washington Water Power. He worked as a lineman and line foreman for 45 years, retiring in 1988. Being a lineman in those days meant climbing poles – long before bucket trucks were used. After Jim retired, he was asked if he was afraid of heights. He said it didn’t matter if he was or not – he had a wife and 5 kids to take care of. In about 1949, Jim designed and built his family’s home, with help from friends and family. Located east of Davenport, it is still the family home, over 70 years later. Jim loved to restore old cars, and he and Audrey loved to travel to Ocean Park, WA, where they had a vacation home. While there, they enjoyed spending time with Dick and Ruthie Sheldon, their friends of nearly 60 years. The Sheldon’s always sent Jim and Audrey home with a generous supply of fresh seafood for the family to enjoy. Jim is survived by Audrey, his wife of over 71 years; son Tom (Lois) Wilke; Daughters, Becky (Ed) Gray; Janet (Jim) Loomis; Jody Wilke; and Geri (Dwayne) Sauter. He is also survived by numerous grandkids and great-grandkids, as well as many nieces and nephews. Jim is also survived by his sister, Lynn (Bill) Hein; and sister-in-law Debbie Wilke. Jim was preceded in death by his parents June and Ernest Wilke; Brothers, Jack, Jerry, Chuck “Pinky” and Wendy, and sister Dorothy Schauerman. At Jim’s adamant request, there will be no funeral or memorial service. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at www.stratefuneralhome.com for the Wilke family. STRATE FUNERAL HOME, Davenport, WA is caring for the family.