Born March 11, 1954 in San Diego to Clarence and Dorothy (Bieber) James, he was the youngest of their three children.
It could only be from this life placement that he learned to expertly charm his way out of any given situation and to rely on his brand of humor to diffuse tension.
He spoke often of his days as a young man moving up the ranks at Sea World, learning the finer points of working with killer whales.
Who knew then that this would be a life skill that would serve him well in years to come?
From that, he transitioned into radio broadcasting, a career he loved and transformed into a lifetime passion of audio and video editing, benefiting entities such as Rockwood Retirement Communities and Ham on Regal.
He dabbled in small business, owning and operating “A Sign of the Times” a few years after moving to Spokane in the 1990s.
He spent more than 10 years at Rockwood Retirement Communities as both their medical van driver and media specialist, starting up an in-house TV station during his employment there.
But Carl - these are mere bullet points on a resume and do not tell the story of you, of the shy boy who grew into a confident, outgoing man, who fearlessly lived your creed of the “Ripple Effect” by never missing an opportunity to engage everyone you met in friendly and often colorful banter.
All your residents were family to you, your co-workers, precious friends.
You are most comfortable with all things uncomfortable, yet have the ability to put anyone at ease.
You detest fish, but love the ocean.
You are the proud inventor (and sole user) of Sink In A Cup.
We all know that life is a series of successes and setbacks.
Over the past few years you sardonically referred to yourself as “Mr. 1%”, meaning that you were on the short end of a Murphy’s Law statistic: “If there’s a 1% chance of something going wrong, it’ll happen to me.”
You held your head up, even though you hated your scars, your FrankenHip, your setbacks, never understanding that those were actually trophies, external evidence of internal fortitude.
You didn’t realize that the cancer, though brutal, did NOT beat you, that your vital spirit is not only intact, but thriving in all of us, your Ripple Effect coming back to you in crashing waves.
What you neglected to see was that you truly are Mr. 1%, and we’ll all miss you for that.
With love always from your wife Lori, son Brian, brother Jerry, sister Janine, all your stepkids and extended family, friends, colleagues and acquaintances.
Special thanks to the 9th Floor, 6th Floor and ICU nurses at Sacred Heart Medical Center for their loving care in those final hours, and to all the doctors, nurses and other professionals, both now and over the past four years, who did all they could to put our Humpty back together again.
A celebration of life is scheduled for 11 a.m. Thursday, December 18th, 2014 at the Ridge at Rockwood South Hill.
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