James "Jim" Wendell Proffitt, 86, a resident of The Dalles, Ore., passed away peacefully at his home after a brief illness on Sunday, Nov. 6, 2011.
He was born in Crawfordsville, Ind. on Feb. 4, 1925 the older of two children to Asher L. and Mary E. (Leinberger) Proffitt.
He grew up in Crawfordsville and Greencastle, graduating from Greencastle High School in 1943. He then attended and graduated from Roosevelt Military Academy in Aledo, Ill., Indiana College of Mortuary Science in Indianapolis, and attended DePauw University for additional studies.
Jim married Betty Luella Mae Owens in Greencastle on July 19, 1946.
He was a 15-year resident of The Dalles, after relocating from Crawfordsville in July 1996. He was a member and former trustee and usher at First Christian Church, member of the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center, former member, secretary and president of The Dalles Lions Club and member of Alpha Tau Omega.
He was a MCMC and The Link volunteer driver for many years, active in First Christian Church bible studies, avid reader of American literature and history, traveled to historical cities and sites, formerly active in a variety of musical clubs and organizations, was a master wood carver with articles on his work published in The Dalles Chronicle and Crawfordsville Journal Review.
His wood carvings, from small, colorful birds to an intricate 12-foot totem pole have been donated to various organizations, was a carving instructor in Hood River. After the opening of the Discovery Center, Jim regularly volunteered his time for more than10 years, participating in activities such as carving exhibitions, research and presentations on the history of steamboats on the Columbia River.
He is survived by his wife, Betty of The Dalles, Ore.; his daughters, Jan Copeland and her husband Jack of The Dalles, and Julie Jones and her husband Jon of New Richmond, Ind.; his son, Jeff Proffitt and his wife Donna of Ridgway, Colo.; his brother, Fred Proffitt of Westernport, Md.; his grandchildren, Brandi Proffitt and her husband Tim Fairfield, Derek Proffitt and fiancée Mindy Keeyes, Jason Jones, and Jonathan Jones and his wife Jody and numerous other loved ones and friends.
Private cremation was held at Win-Quatt Crematory in The Dalles with Spencer, Libby and Powell Funeral Home in care of arrangements.
Memorial services will be held at 11 a.m. Saturday, Nov. 12 at First Christian Church, 909 Court St., The Dalles, Ore., with Pastor Mike Wilson officiating.
Memorials may be made to First Christian Church or Home at Last Humane Society.