Dickson, James M. "Jim" Sr.
MERRILL - James M. "Jim" Dickson Sr., age 85, of Merrill, Wis., formerly of Portage, Wis., died on Monday, Sept. 13, 2021, at his home. He was born on Dec. 27, 1935, in McAlester, Okla., and was the adopted son to the late Marion and Mary (Fitzner) Dickson.
Jim was raised and attended school in Baxter Springs, Kan.
Jim enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, proudly serving his country with the 388th Fighter Squadron stationed in Clovis, N.M. During Jim's service with the U.S. Air Force, he served in Korea and Japan as a staff sergeant and crew chief maintaining aircraft, specifically maintaining their engines. While in the Air Force, Jim also became a third degree black belt in karate and found a love of motorcycling. Jim had a wide variety of hobbies and interests, including prospecting, traveling throughout the West, and treasure hunting, and he was a certified diver.
After leaving the military, Jim worked in construction, paving roads and building bridges, and later pursued what he enjoyed the most: working on heating and refrigeration systems as a technician and later owning his own business. Jim's passion was making broken things work and helping people. Jim was self-taught and later shared his knowledge teaching at a tech school in Texas.
Jim's faith was important to him. He was an active member of the Seventh Day Adventist church throughout his life. He was also an elder at his churches in Merrill and Rhinelander. Jim is lovingly remembered by his family as funny, happy-go-lucky guy who was always a lot of fun to be around. He will be sadly missed; however, he will remain in the hearts of his friends and family forever.
Jim is survived by his wife, Patricia Dickson; his children, Debbie (Larry) Bynum, Tina (Jim) Erdmann, Lisa Brown, and Mark (Wendy) Dickson; many grandchildren and great-grandchildren who will miss "Grandpa with the Bears"; stepchildren, Brenda (Jeff) Adaire, Dean (Susan) Achterberg, Terrence Achterberg, Laura Achterberg, Pamela (David) Lyons, Elden Shier and Thomas (Jenny) Shier; sister, Beth Ann (Dean) Auman; nieces, nephews and siblings, along with his biological extended family. He was preceded in death by his parents; first wife, Phyllis Dickson; son, James M. Dickson II; stepson, Patrick Shier; and six biological siblings.
A private family service with full military honors will be held Monday, Sept. 27 at 1 p.m. at Oak Grove Cemetery in Portage, Wis. A celebration of life service will be held for friends and family at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, please direct any memorials to the family and send to Waid Funeral Home, 301 Eagle Drive, Merrill, WI 54452, in care of Patricia Dickson.
Waid Funeral Home & Cremation Service of Merrill is assisting the family with arrangements. Online condolences may be made at www.waidfuneral.com.