Uncle Jim, my Aunt Dixie’s husband has always seemed like such a quiet, and even shy man.  I don’t think he really was shy, just quiet. I think he was a man who was often deep in his own thoughts, which is quite a bit like I am, so I can relate to it. Quiet people aren’t necessarily shy, and quite often, they really have a lot on their minds, but they just don’t always say everything they know. The strange thing is that their face almost always speaks volumes. That is how I have always felt about Uncle Jim. You could see how he felt by the smiles on his face…and he smiles a lot.

A serious family man, Uncle Jim moved his family to the country on the west side of Casper, where they live to this day. His children have bought homes that are very close to their parents…just across the street, in fact. The family is very close, and enjoys each other’s company. The grandchildren have the benefit of the closeness to grandparents, and their parents have the ability to work, knowing that the kids can be with their grandparents while they are away. It is a win/win situation.

For many years, Uncle Jim took care of his mother, who lived with them for quite some time, and also helped in the care of my grandparents when then needed help. That is really the thing that has always impressed me the most with my uncle. He is a very caring person, who always puts the needs of others ahead of his own needs. People just don’t come better than that. In this age of much better longevity, caregivers are very much in demand, and as a caregiver myself, I know what it takes to care for another person. It is a selfless act of a special person with a heart of gold that is filled with compassion.

Today is my Uncle Jim’s 75th birthday, and as usual, he is spending it busily getting things ready for the cold winter months that are coming up, because, that is simply what he does. He takes care of the needs of his family. Well, happy birthday Uncle Jim!! Don’t work too hard. We love you!!

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