Ken passed peacefully surrounded by his loving family on May 5, 2013. The son of Ken and Ruth James. Ken was born in Great Falls, Montana. The family moved to Santa Rosa where Ken went to Santa Rosa High, enjoying sports and playing quarterback on the football team under the direction of Coach Jimmy Underhill whom he greatly admired. Ken graduated in 1951 and is still a member of the Santa Rosa High School foundation. From there, he attended Santa Rosa JC and then University of Santa Clara School of Law School, graduating in 1957. On September 30, 1957 Ken was commissioned into the United States Navy, after graduating he served as command legal officer in Germany for two years. After his return home to Santa Rosa, he served for a time as an assistant public Defender from 1960-61 and then joined the Spridgen Law firm where he was made a partner. In 1982 Ken established the Law firm of James, Gack and Freeman with his partners Kenneth Gack and Richard Freeman. He is past president of Sonoma county Bar Association, Member of the State Bar of California, California Trial lawyers association, Association of Defense Counsel and is an Emeritus Diplomat in the American board of Trial Lawyers (ABOTA). In 2005 Ken was very moved to be honored at the Sonoma County Bar Association Careers of Distinction Dinner. Ken was an avid golfer and was a past president and member of Santa Rosa Golf and Country Club. Later he enjoyed playing Sunday mornings at Oakmont Golf Club with his closest friends, some being his buddies from Santa Rosa High. Ken is survived by his loving wife Donna. His children Julie Dempsey (Terence), Christopher James (Molly), Mary Beth Moreno (Bob) Step Children Jim Kracke (Brenda),Elaine Pedroncelli (Paul) and Laura Kracke. He cherished his grandchildren Patrick, Whitney, Jordan, Kasey, Jessica, Tim, Chris, Julie, Kenny, Sarah, P.J., Hannah, Heather, Tim, Garrett and Will. He also leaves behind his siblings, Michael James (Sherri), Marcia D'Angelo (Jim), Sharon Bertotti (Ed), Ruthie Bollman, Stephen James (Toni) and his many nieces and nephews. Ken was preceded in death by his brother Robert James and step son Tom Kracke. A Rosary Service will be held on Monday, May 13, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. at the Daniels Chapel of the Roses, 1225 Sonoma Avenue, Santa Rosa. A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, May 14, 2013 at 11:00 a.m. at Star of the Valley Catholic Church, 545 White Oak Drive, Santa Rosa, (Oakmont). A reception celebrating Ken's life will immediately follow the mass at The Quail Inn (Oakmont), 7025 Oakmont Drive, Santa Rosa. Donation in Ken's Memory may be made to the Santa Rosa High School Foundation, PO Box 11006, Santa Rosa, CA 95406. Arrangements under the direction of DANIELS CHAPEL OF THE ROSES FUNERAL AND CREMATION SERVICES, (707)525-3730.
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Daniels Chapel of the Roses
1225 Sonoma Avenue Santa Rosa, CA 95402
Published Online in the Press Democrat from May 10 to May 17, 2013