|Lieutenant Colonel James
Born April 2, 1934 in Wetumpka, Alabama, Jim traveled the world during his 25 years of service in the U.S. Air Force before retiring as a Lt. Colonel in Sacramento, CA.
He was a skilled pilot who was greatly admired by those who served with him. Jim was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for flying a nighttime rescue mission to evacuate wounded in Vietnam. Jim also received numerous other awards, including receiving the Air Medal four times (four Oak Leaf Clusters) for similar medical evacuation missions in Vietnam. Jim served with the 537th Tactical Airlift Squadron in Vietnam.
He graduated with a BS in Industrial Engineering from Texas A & M and an MS in Industrial Engineering from the University of Missouri. After the Air Force he had a second career as an Operations Manager and as a Management Consultant for a variety of companies. In retirement, he was able to travel the world again on numerous trips abroad with his wife of 54 years, Betty Collier. Though well traveled, Jim was perhaps most happy tending his garden or tinkering with projects at his home. Jim was an avid reader, loved nature, and had many hobbies, including an active participation in the Sacramento Blue Computer Club. Jim also took great pleasure and developed lasting friendships through his participation in the C7A Caribou Association with fellow veterans.
Jim passed quietly at home on December 27th, 2008 with his loving wife at his side.
Jim rarely spoke of his own accomplishments, but truly enjoyed and reveled in the accomplishments of the family and friends he loved so much. As a kind, good natured, and generous man, he was greatly loved by all who had the pleasure of knowing him. He is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Betty Collier, his children, Pam Swartwood and her husband Barry of Woodland, CA, Jim Collier and his wife Beccie of Great Falls, VA, Tom Collier and wife Jenny of Sacramento, CA, and grandchildren, Erica Collier, Devin Swartwood, Connor Swartwood, Chad Collier, and Chase Collier.
A Memorial Service will be held Monday, January 5th, 2009 at 1:00 p.m., at Sierra View Funeral Chapel, 6201 Fair Oaks Blvd., Carmichael CA.
Below are some photos from Jim's memorial service reception.