James “Jim” Perkins Jr., 76, of Delta Junction, died unexpectedly Jan. 15, 2014, in Fairbanks.
Jim was born June 1, 1937, in Ocqueoc, Mich., to mother Ilo Flewelling and father James Perkins. Jim was the youngest of nine children, and he had five brothers and three sisters. He married Barbara Lee Hill on Oct. 1, 1960, in Olympia, Wash.
As a teenager, he was a Merchant Marine and sailed the Great Lakes. He joined the U.S. Army in 1955, and after his first tour of duty, he left the Army and attended GM Tech School. Later returning to the Army, he retired as a Sgt. First Class in 1976, serving in Germany, Korea and three times in Vietnam. Jim was a decorated military veteran earning a National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with three bars, five times Good Conduct Medal, Vietnam Campaign Medal and Gallantry Cross Medal with a palm. After retirement, he was a truck driver, worked in civil service, and he and Barb owned and operated the Clearwater Store in Clearwater.
Jim and Barb were avid bowlers, and he enjoyed the outdoors and playing cards and board games with family and friends. He liked to joke and share funny stories.
He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Barbara Perkins; his daughter, Reta Russell Houghton; son, Darryl Perkins, son, James Perkins; sisters, Clare and Betty; four grandchildren, Joanna and Tristan Houghton, and Arianna and Samantha Perkins; his little buddy, J.R., and numerous nieces and nephews.
Jim was preceded in death by his parents, Ilo and James Perkins; siblings, Marvin, Melvin, Douglas, Richard, Kenneth and Audrey Perkins and his oldest son, Thomas Russell.
As Jim always used to say, “Whatever you do, pay them taxes so I might get a pay raise next year.”
A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, 2014, at Clearwater Baptist Church, Delta Junction, with Pastor in Glen Cotton officiating. Full military honors will be rendered.
Arrangements are entrusted to Fairbanks Funeral Home.