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James Ostermann Mason


1930 - 2019
James Ostermann Mason Obituary
James Ostermann Mason
1930 ~ 2019
James Ostermann Mason, husband, father, grandfather and great grandfather passed away peacefully on October 9, 2019, surrounded by his wife and children.
He was born June 19, 1930 in Salt Lake City, Utah to Ambrose Stanton and Neoma Ostermann Thorup Mason. He was a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and married his childhood and lifelong sweetheart, Lydia Marie Smith, in the Salt Lake Temple on December 29, 1952. They recently celebrated the 66th anniversary of their happy and adventurous years together.
Jim lived during his youth on the Salt Lake avenues, attending Ensign, Lowell, Bryant and West High schools. He graduated from the University of Utah with a B.A. degree in 1955, and a medical degree in 1958. He interned at Johns Hopkins Hospital, Baltimore, Maryland, and did residency training in Internal Medicine at the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts. He also received master and doctorate degrees in Public Health in 1962 and 1967 from the Harvard School of Public Health.
He filled his military obligation with the Epidemic Intelligence Service at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, United States Public Health Service. Other career responsibilities included Commissioner of Health Services, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (1970-75), Utah State Public Health Laboratory Director (1975-76), Director, Division of Community Medicine, University of Utah School of Medicine (1976-77), Executive Director, Utah Department of Health (1977-83), Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1983-88), United States Assistant Secretary for Health and U. S. Delegate to the Executive Committee of the World Health Organization (1989-92), and Vice President and Professor of Preventive Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (1992-93). He retired from the U.S. Public Health Service in 1993 with the rank of admiral. He left retirement to become President and CEO of Avalon Health Care, Inc. (2005-07), and enjoyed being part of a business delivering quality skilled nursing care, hospice and palliative care services to the elderly and disabled.
Jim strived to be a dedicated servant of the Lord, Jesus Christ. He served a life changing mission in Denmark (1950-52), and enjoyed being a home teacher/minister. He served as the bishop of two wards, stake president, regional representative and as a member of the Aaronic Priesthood MIA General Board. In 1994 he was surprised by a call to serve in the Second Quorum of the Seventy where, accompanied by Marie, he served in the presidencies of the Africa and Africa West Areas. Church and medical services in Africa were the capstone of his life. He had an abiding interest in the well-being of African people. After his release from the Seventy, Jim and Marie were called to serve together as President and Matron of the Bountiful Utah Temple (2000-03). He found great joy and satisfaction serving as a sealer in the Bountiful Temple until he was 84 years old.
His most cherished legacy was Marie and their family. He strived to forge a loving bond with each of his children and their families. He enjoyed the out-of-doors and looked forward to hiking, skiing, backpacking, tennis and fishing with a dry fly. He spent many happy hours at the cabin in Silver Fork his father and he built when he was a boy.
He is survived by his nearly lifelong companion Marie and their seven children: James S. (Jane), Susan Fackrell (Brent), Bruce T. (Debbie), Ralph N. (Wendy), Samuel R. (Heidi), Sara Wankier (Ralph), Benjamin S. (Tabitha) and his sister Ardys Dublinski (James), as well as 27 grandchildren and 47 great grandchildren. His parents and sister Marilyn Mason Webb preceded him in death.
Funeral services will be held Saturday, October 19th, at 11:00 a.m. at the Farmington North Stake Center located at 729 West Shepard Lane, Farmington, Utah, 84025. A viewing will be held October 18th from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at the Russon Mortuary, 1941 N. Main Street, Farmington, Utah, 84025, and from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. prior to funeral services at the Church. Burial will be at the Salt Lake City Cemetery. Instead of flowers, Jim would have wanted his family and friends to spend more time with their loved ones. Families are forever! Online guestbook at www.russonmortuary.com

Published in Salt Lake Tribune from Oct. 13 to Oct. 16, 2019
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