James “Jim” Walth, 79, passed away on September 9, 2023 at Sanford Health after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Saturday, September 16 at Mandan United Methodist Church, 610 12th St. NW, Mandan.
Visitation will be held from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. Friday, September 15 at Parkway Funeral Service, 2330 Tyler Pkwy, Bismarck. A prayer service will begin at 7:30 p.m.
Burial will be held at Mandan Union Cemetery, Mandan.
Jim was born on November 22, 1943, on the farm south of Richardton, to Fred and Esther Walth. He was the youngest of three, growing up on the family farm. He attended grade school at Heart River School #6. Jim always told his kids that he had to walk to school uphill both ways.
He attended Hebron High School until he was needed on the family farm. While working on the farm, he also helped neighbors whenever someone needed an extra hand. He moved to Mandan in 1964 and worked for Wetsch Plumbing before being hired by Gray Oil Co. in December. Along with petroleum products, Jim provided custom crop spraying for local farmers.
Eventually, Jim and his coworkers bought the company when the existing owner retired. For 55 years, Jim continued to put his heart and soul into serving his customers. Business hours did not apply to him, he treated the fuel and heating needs of his customers as if they were members of his own family. In time, Jim’s son Dave went to work for Gray Oil. Working alongside his son was one of the true joys of Jim’s life.
Jim married Beverly Brinkman on May 15, 1965, at the Almont Lutheran Church. They had a short courtship. They met each other in October, got engaged in December, and married in May. In March 1967 they welcomed a daughter, Deanna Marie, followed by a son, David James in August 1970. For 58 years Jim and Bev loved and supported each other. Whether at home, the farm, or visiting relatives, they were always together.
In addition to Gray Oil, farming his own land and being on the tractor gave Jim great joy and was his passion. His love for farming extended into working for a farmer south of Mandan for over 25 years.
Jim had a very outgoing personality. He could visit with anyone, no matter if he knew them or not. He was a very knowledgeable man with a lot of common sense. He could look at almost anything and figure out how it should work.
Jim also enjoyed hunting, playing cards, and aggravation. He loved spending time with his kids and grandchildren and playing an active role, whether making homemade maple nut ice cream, or attending concerts and sporting events.
Jim is survived by his wife, Beverly; daughter, Deanna (Randy) Meissner, Mandan; son, Dave (Bree) Walth, Bismarck; grandchildren, Brianna Meissner and her fiancé, Eric Ricard, Grafton, Brian Meissner, Fargo, Austin Walth, Moorhead, and Bella and Paxton Walth, Bismarck; sister, Viola (Edgar) Fuchs, Bismarck; sister-in-law, Violet Walth, Dickinson; sister in law, Ardys (Chuck) Dohman, Fargo; niece, Valerie (Ross) Reinhiller, Williston, and their daughters, Jayne (Nick) Kinney and Anne Reinhiller; and two special girls, Natalie Tokach and Ashlee Fiorio.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Fred and Esther Walth; brother, Milton Walth; mother-in-law, Elda Brinkman; and niece, Debra Walth.
Rest in peace, Jim. We will miss you and love you more than words can say!
You were more than a husband, dad, and grandpa.
You were a mentor and true hero. You taught without words and always led by example.