James A. Bortnem - Brookings


Oct. 26, 1951 - Sept. 5, 2019

James A. Bortnem was born on Oct. 26, 1951, in Highland Park, MI, the son of Clinton and Sadie Bortnem.  

He died on Thursday, Sept. 5, 2019, at his residence near Brookings surrounded by his loving family under Hospice Care at the age of 67.  

Memorial services will be 2 p.m., Tuesday, Sept. 10, 2019, at Grace Free Lutheran Church in Bruce.  Visitation will be Monday, from 5-7 p.m., and a prayer service at 6:30 p.m., on Monday, Sept. 9, 2019 at Rude’s Funeral Home in Brookings,

Jim was baptized in the Salem Norwegian Lutheran Church in Detroit, MI, on Feb. 17, 1952. He received his education in the Brookings Schools and was a graduate of the Brookings High School in 1969. He continued his education at Miltonvale Wesleyan College in Miltonvale, KS, where he played basketball.  He traveled for over one year on the Pacific Coast after college.  After various jobs he started working in the construction business until his retirement.  He was united in marriage to Beth Skovlund on Sept. 2, 1978, in Bruce. 

 Jim enjoyed living in the country.  During retirement he loved watching and taking pictures of birds and other wildlife.  He took great pleasure in the gathering of hummingbirds in his yard.  

He also enjoyed taking many pictures of his family.  He loved playing pool with his friends.  He was an avid reader and movie collector.  He was quite adept at drawing and singing, though he rarely performed in public.  

He also greatly enjoyed listening to music, swimming and snorkeling.  He loved spending time with his family and friends. Jim was also a caretaker for his mother for many years as well as many other family and friends.

Jim is survived by his wife Beth of Brookings, his children Jennifer Meghan (Eric) Bortnem-Risty, of Estelline, Travis Lee (Rebecca Schrag) Bortnem of Brookings; Grandchildren, Melissa, Aislynn, Tyjion, Simon, Gabriel, Freyja, Roland; one great grandson; Joshua,  one sister; Joan (Dennis) Clarke of Pierre; two aunts, Laurine Yates, Fern Cofield, and Auntie Earleen Berge; sister-in-law, Connie (David) Karl, brother-in-law, Marvin Skovlund, several nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents, parents-in-law Palmer and Dorothy Skovlund, and several aunts and uncles.

Condolences may be sent to the family through www.rudesfuneralhome.com.

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