April 16, 1949 - April 15, 2021
James "Jim" DeLancy Cline, Jr, known to many as JD, peacefully passed away on April 15, just nine weeks after receiving a heartbreaking diagnosis of metastatic bladder cancer. He was surrounded by his loving family and was one day shy of his 72nd birthday.
Jim was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, a passionate fighter for his family and friends, a reliable source of quick-witted jokes and sarcasm, and a professional golfer and instructor for his entire adult life.
Jim was a lifelong teacher for people pursuing athletic success, whether it was coaching his children in baseball, soccer, and basketball before they later became college athletes, or the thousands of golf students that he trained as a PGA Teaching Professional over the past several decades in Washington, Arizona, and Florida. Nothing made Jim prouder than seeing a student improve their skills and reach success in competition. He taught the fundamentals of the game, but more memorable were the life lessons he instilled: hard work, mental toughness, compassion, and a sense of humor.
Jim had many accomplishments himself, winning Washington Junior State Champion when he was a teenager, competing in the U.S. Senior Open in 1999, being awarded PGA Teacher of the Year for Washington, and earning Master Instructor credentials from the Jim McLean Golf School. Since 2003, he served as Director of Instruction at Bear Creek Country Club in Woodinville, his home away from home where he created a thriving community of golfers of all ages.
Golf was Jim's second love, because his first love will always be Marcia Cline, née Coleman, his best friend and wife of 51 years. Jim and Marcia met each other at Kenmore Junior High School and never separated, building a family as they moved throughout California, Oregon, and Washington, eventually settling in Bothell, Camano Island, and finally, Woodinville, where Jim spent the last five years of his life commuting to work via golf cart. Jim and Marcia were partners for more than half a century, a sterling example of long-term trust, intimacy, and romance that has been a role model to many couples privileged enough to witness it in action.
Jim and Marcia lived on Camano from 1997 to 2013, raising their third child, Kelsey, who graduated from Stanwood High School in 2007. He was at every one of Kelsey's SHS Varsity soccer games on the team's run to the State Finals in 2006. Jim spent time as an instructor at Kayak Point Golf Course, and Marcia worked at the Stanwood QFC from the day it opened until her retirement in 2015.
Jim was all about families - the one you are born to, and the one you choose and create. One of his final statements was one of fulfillment and satisfaction over where his children have ended up: "All of you found love, and you're all going to be all right." The kids are alright - thank you, Papa, for everything.
Jim is survived by his wife and life partner Marcia; his children Jonas (Brandi), Tyler (Anchalee Thainoi), and Kelsey (Erik "Woody" Houser); his grandchildren Cyrus, Nora, and a third expected to arrive in October; his siblings in-law Coleen and Norman Anderson and William Jr. and Elaine Coleman; his niece and grandniece Bonnie and Ginny McCraney; his dogs Zeva and Tuli; and hundreds of students and friends who made up the golfing community that was his life's work. He was preceded in death by his parents, James Sr. and Isabel, and his parents in-law, William Sr. and Margie Mae Coleman.
Thank you for the generosity and love that kept Jim and his family going over his final weeks. A celebration of life will be scheduled later this year as weather and COVID conditions improve. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to the TGR Foundation or your local food bank. See a longer version of this obituary online.
Published by Stanwood Camano News from Apr. 27 to May 4, 2021.