James M. Ursin, age 91, of Richland Center, died peacefully at home on September 10.
Jim was a man of great Christian faith, and his actions and spirit reflected that. His gentle kindness was felt by all who knew him.
He was born June 12, 1925, in Suttons Bay, Michigan, the son of Nikolai and Olava (Larson) Ursin. Jim graduated from Wittenberg High School and enrolled in St. Olaf College. In 1943 he left St. Olaf to enter the U.S. Navy, where he served as a medical corpsman during World War II. After his honorable discharge in 1945, Jim returned to St. Olaf to receive his bachelor’s degree. He went on to the University of Iowa in Iowa City for his master’s degree in social work.
In 1948, Jim was united in marriage to Pearl Nysted McDermott, who died in 2002. Early in their marriage, Jim and Pearl lived in the Des Moines area, where Jim worked for Lutheran Social Services, resettling more than 300 European refugees. The couple moved to Wausau, and Jim continued working at Lutheran Social Services before becoming the social worker for the Wausau School District, and later a family counselor for an independent agency, retiring in 1987. They were members of Immanuel Lutheran Church, where Jim sang in the church choir and taught the Bethel Bible Series. He also sang in the Wausau Lutheran Choir. In 1997 Jim and Pearl moved to Richland Center, where they joined St. John’s Lutheran Church.
Jim was united in marriage to Lois Moe Anderson in 2003. He stayed active in retirement, volunteering for Meals on Wheels, visiting shut-ins, swimming daily, knitting countless blankets and baby sweaters for Lutheran World Relief, singing in the St. John’s Lutheran Church choir, and participating in Sons of Norway. Fluent in three languages, he enjoyed several trips abroad, especially Norway and Germany.
Jim is survived by his wife, Lois; three children: John (Chris) Ursin of Oklahoma City, OK; Eric (Deedee) Ursin of Phoenix, AZ; and Kristi Ursin of Sayner, WI; three stepchildren: Anne (Scott) Fischer of Bowler, WI; Joy (David) Coyne of Barneveld, WI; and Kari (William Pink) Anderson of Shorewood, WI; eighteen grandchildren; nine great-grandchildren; and many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents; his first wife, Pearl; and siblings Elliott, Trygve, Norman, Ellen, and Alice.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, September 23, at 1:00 PM at St. John’s Lutheran Church in Richland Center with visitation at St. John’s from 11:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Military Funeral Honors will be provided by the Local Military Memorial Honors Unit.
Memorials may be directed to St. John’s Lutheran Church. The family would like to extend heartfelt thanks to the Upland Hills Hospice staff for their compassionate care.
The Pratt Funeral and Cremation Service is assisting the family with their arrangements. Online condolences can be made at prattfuneralservice.com.