JAMES L. (Jim) HICKS May 25, 1928 – Aug. 28, 2018

The Oakdale Leader - - NEWS -

James L. (Jim) Hicks was born May 25, 1928 and passed away peace­fully Au­gust 28, 2018 at the age of 90. He is sur­vived by his son, Scott (Oak­dale); brothers, Alvin (Pismo Beach) and Lewis (Bak­ers­field); grand­daugh­ter, Mari (Oak­dale); step­grand­daugh­ter, Anne (Rot­ter­dam, Nether­lands); and two step-great-grand­chil­dren; as well as sev­eral neph­ews, nieces, and cousins. He is pre­ceded in death by his wife, Pat (1998); his par­ents, Richard and Mar­garet Hicks; brother, Richard; and many aunts, un­cles, and cousins.

Jim was born and raised in Fresno and served in the US Navy right at the end of WWII and dur­ing the Korean con­flict. He ran au­to­mo­bile ser­vice sta­tions in his 20s and early 30s and even­tu­ally went to work for the State of Cal­i­for­nia in their ju­ve­nile jus­tice sys­tem (Youth Au­thor­ity) for 25 years un­til his re­tire­ment.

He met his wife, Pat, in Yosemite while run­ning a ser­vice sta­tion in the park. They lived there un­til shortly after their son Scott’s birth in 1957. Be­fore Pat’s pass­ing, they en­joyed cruises and trav­eled through the Panama Canal and the in­land water­ways of Alaska. Jim was a life­long base­ball fan. He loved the SF Gi­ants and at­tended many games; his first be­ing on his 31st birth­day, when his fa­ther took him to a game at Seal Sta­dium in SF shortly after the Gi­ants moved west. His last game in per­son was ex­actly 50 years to the day later when Scott took him to AT&T Park for his 81st birth­day. In 2007, 2008, and 2009, Jim drove to Ari­zona to watch Scott par­tic­i­pate in sev­eral SF Gi­ant’s “Fan­tasy Camps,” where he got to meet the coaches who were for­mer Gi­ants ball play­ers (who he had watched dur­ing their own ca­reers) in the ma­jor leagues. After Pat’s pass­ing, Jim set out to see a base­ball game in ev­ery ma­jor league ball­park. It took him three sum­mers to ac­com­plish; one with a tour group, and two he planned to­tally on his own. He man­aged to get to ev­ery park – ex­cept Mon­treal – and got into the Chicago White Sox park, but the game was rained out.

In his later years, he bat­tled COPD which slowed him down quite a bit. He still en­joyed watch­ing games on TV al­most ev­ery night. He at­tended The River Chris­tian Com­mu­nity in Oak­dale un­til his health pre­vented him from get­ting out any longer. Dur­ing the last cou­ple of years he suf­fered from de­men­tia and was un­der Hospice care for his fi­nal few months. Many thanks to the Bristol Hospice staff for their lov­ing care dur­ing this fi­nal, dif­fi­cult time. His big­gest goal near the end was to make his 90th birth­day which he ac­com­plished this past May.

With help from sev­eral pri­vate care­givers, Jim was able to re­main at home with his son, Scott and grand­daugh­ter, Mari, un­til the end.

There will be a grave­side gath­er­ing later in Septem­ber (date to be de­ter­mined) at Bel­mont Me­mo­rial Park in Fresno; where much of his fam­ily is laid to rest. No other ser­vices are planned. In lieu of flow­ers, or other gifts, do­na­tions can be made to Astro Foun­da­tion Inc., a lo­cal an­i­mal res­cue group, which Scott helped found and for which Mari is a valu­able vol­un­teer. All gifts will help fund a new no-kill an­i­mal shel­ter in Oak­dale.

The Oak­dale (Calif.) Leader Sept. 5, 2018

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