James Leroy Ferguson passed away December 10, 2020, in the loving arms of his wife, Jo Ann, and daughters Jennifer and Dana. Born, January 4, 1944, in Portland, Oregon, James “Jim” was the eldest of Betty Jean (Hunefeld) and Elgar “Jim” Ferguson’s, four children. Jim served in the United States Air Force, stationed in Goldsboro, NC, where he was introduced by mutual friends to Jo Ann Fleury of Morristown, NJ. In 1966, Jim and Jo Ann were married and moved to Portland, OR, where Jim began his career in the painting industry—first with his father and later forming his own company. In the 1970’s, Northwest Painting grew to be one of the largest commercial and industrial painting companies of the time. Jim was not averse to risk and was always willing to embrace new practices, technologies and opportunities. Jim was passionate about the industry, serving on many association boards and apprenticeship committees during his career. Jim knew many successes and a few failures but he never gave up—just as Jim was in business, he was in life. Jim enjoyed motorcycle desert racing but by the eighties decided he needed a less dangerous hobby and discovered golf. Jim became an avid golfer and embraced the beauty and challenge of the game—first as a member of Pleasant Valley then later Royal Oaks in Vancouver, WA, and most recently, Willamette Country Club in Canby, OR. Jim Ferguson was a family man and always a kid at heart—he was a big personality, a relentless tease and a great story and joke-teller. Jim was about experiences and lived life to the fullest. Jim and Jo Ann had the good fortune to travel and enjoyed exploring new destinations together. Although Jim and Jo Ann had sold their last business in 2017, they both continued to work for that company and Jim always made time for those who sought his advice and shared his entrepreneurial spirit. Jim was preceded in death by brothers Wesley and Terry. Jim is survived by his wife of 54 years, Jo Ann; daughter Dana and her husband Michael and grandchildren Robert and Nicole; daughter Jennifer and her husband Alex and grandchildren Sydney and Jamie; sister Sheryle Dennis, her husband Craig, and nephews Jeffrey and Kevin. Jim was blessed to have had many close friendships in his nearly 77 years and a loving family who adored him. Due to the pandemic, there will be no memorial service at this time. Memorial contributions may be made to: St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital or the Lung Cancer Research Foundation.
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