Jim Eernisse was an electrical whiz kid. He spoke often of when—at 7 years old—he completed his first electrical circuit. It was the spark that ignited a lifelong fascination.
Older sisters Betty and Margaret later claimed to love Jimmy, but it is hard to imagine how when he routinely shocked them awake with energized copper wires under their bed sheets, or when private romantic telephone conversations were broadcast over the family radio.
After Tacoma’s Stadium HS, Yale on the Navy’s dime, and the UW, the boy wonder launched an electrical engineering career that spanned six decades at the Army Corps of Engineers and Wood Harbinger. He was an engineer’s engineer, known as an unparalleled problem solver and, even late in his career, an electrical whiz kid.
Jim and Anne, his wife of 58 years, raised five children in their big red Des Moines house behind the trees. Activity in the Eernisse home revolved around Des Moines Gospel Chapel and Lakeside Bible Camp on Whidbey Island, organizations the couple helped found and build between children three and five. Jim directed youth camps, served as church treasurer, and was on call 24/7 to fix the boiler or rewire the sound system.
The most heartfelt memories and tributes were those remembering Jim as a Sunday morning song leader. Jim loved music and led a hymn like no other. The Lord’s love shone in his eyes, and the music’s energy played in every bounce.
Jim was blessed with exceptional health and mental acuity, enjoying an independent life full of routines and time with loved ones until he passed on May 12th at age 95.
James Daniel Eernisse is preceded in death by wife Anna Mae Larson Eernisse (2007) and daughter Marti Morrell (1991). He is survived by children David Eernissee (Christine Hopkins), Doug Eernisse (LeAnn Dahl Eernisse), Mindy Sauerlender (Mac Sauerlender), and Dan Eernissee (Amy Bogino Eernissee), his 12 grandchildren, and his 15 great grandchildren.
Memorial gifts are encouraged to be directed to Lakeside Bible Camp.
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