Orphan Train Rider

Orphan Train Rider
Oliver Nordmark - Age 15 - Esbon KS

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

In Memory of James B. Nordmark

Yesterday I received the sad news that my uncle, James Bruce Nordmark passed away on Memorial Day, May 31, 2010. Jim was born the fifth child of Oliver and Estella Nordmark on October 12, 1926. He, along with my father, was the driving force behind my third book, PEANUT BUTTER FOR CUPCAKES: A True Story From the Great Depression. He graciously took the time to sit down with a tape recorder and tell me all the stories of his childhood...the good, the bad, and the very funny!

Jim served his country as a young man of 16, having changed the date on his birth certificate so that he could sign up. Before his 17th birthday, he was on a ship headed to the Mediterranean Sea.

He married Muriel Jones with whom he celebrated 64 years of marriage. Together they raised four children, Steve, Debbie, Joann and Jimmy.

I have so many memories of Uncle Jim.... Vacationing at his home every summer, waterskiing and camping at Pardee's Beach in the Poconos, traveling to Colorado with his family and mine, working with him on my book.....he was without question, my favorite uncle. In fact, my son James is named for him.

Life is complicated, and time and circumstances can overshadow what truly matters. Jim's life began under difficult conditions and he weathered many hardships and challenges over the course of his 83 years. He would often remark, after telling a particularly hard story, "But... I got through that."
It was part of his outlook on life, I would say. Do what you have to do to get through the tough times. Relish the good times.
Jim Nordmark was a kind man who loved his family and spoke with pride of their accomplishments. I am blessed to have had him in my family and in my life. I think that I can speak for our entire family when I say that I will miss him, and always remember him with a smile. I love you Uncle Jim.


Dianne K. Salerni said...

My condolences, Donna. A very sad thing indeed. But. Peanut Butter for Cupcakes is a wonderful legacy and a lasting tribute to your uncle.

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

I'm so sorry, Donna. You have done your Uncle and your family proud by the wonderful books you've written. Take care and take time to reflect as you have done in this post.

Yaya' s Home said...

Oh, Donna. I'm so very sorry. I know your uncle must love you deeply; every bit as much as you love him. I do hope we'll get to read about more about his life and adventures. Your talent for putting reality into those experiences are ranked right up there with the best.

Stand still and remember. Then, share.


~ Yaya

Anonymous said...

Donna, terrific tribute to Uncle Jim. Today was the first day that I dared to see if you posted anything about it. I should have known that you would find just the right words to honor his memory.
Love ya,

Sharon K. Mayhew said...

Donna--I have an award for you over at my blog. I just finished the first book. You have a great "voice!"