More Obituaries for James Oetzel
Looking for an obituary for a different person with this name?

James L. Oetzel

1919 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
James L. Oetzel Obituary
August 26, 1919 - February 28, 2016 Jim Oetzel died quietly in his sleep in San Mateo, California. He was born in Cleveland, Ohio, and spent his early years in Detroit, Michigan. Jim won several ice skating competitions when in his teens and later skated in ice shows, appearing for a time with Norwegian figure skater Sonja Henie. He attended Wayne State University in Detroit, and UCLA and USC in Los Angeles, earning an advanced degree in clinical psychology. He later became a purser for Pan American Airways, which allowed him to explore the bird and marine life of all seven continents. After retiring from Pan Am, Jim became a remote location photographer for Comstock in New York and wrote several natural history guides. His extensive knowledge of the world of nature led to a 13-year stint as naturalist aboard expedition ships in the Antarctic, Arctic, Indonesia, South America, and South Pacific. Jim leaves a cadre of family and friends to celebrate his long, happy life: Sharon Chester, Irla Lee Zimmerman Oetzel, Robert, Pauline, and Tom Oetzel, Donn Oetzel, and Justine and Haydee Frederiksen.
Published in the Los Angeles Times from Mar. 2 to Mar. 3, 2016
Read More
Share memories or express condolences below.
 Add Photos
View All Photos
 Add Videos