James Charles Gritman, 80, died in Green Valley, Ariz., on Wednesday, April 10, 2013, after a long illness. A celebration of his life will be held this summer at the family home in Bemidji, Minn.
Jim was born in Geneseo, and after his high school graduation, he served in the Marine Corps during the Korean War. He attended the University of Missouri and graduated with a degree in forestry. His career started with Dierks Forest Inc. as a forester and then with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. When Jim retired in 1992, he was regional director of the eight-state Midwest Region with offices in Minneapolis, Minn. He enjoyed his time bird hunting, fishing, golfing, traveling the world and, most importantly, being with his family. Close to his heart were the Nature Conservancy and Ducks Unlimited.
Jim is survived by his family who loved him deeply and will cherish his memory: Ann (Albertson), his wife of 57 years; three daughters and their spouses, Julie and Rich Burke, Jamye and Ryan Bauer, and Jennifer and Jon Crump; six grandchildren, Kristie Bauer, Carolyn Crump Sharratt (Adam), Sarah Bauer Anderson (Dan), Julia Steppe, James “Andy” Crump and Cole Bauer; three great grandchildren; his sister, Judith Ellis and her husband, Capt. Robert Ellis, USN Ret.; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Orval and Irene Gritman of Geneseo and Bemidji.