Jim A. Ragains, of Kamiah, died at his daughter’s home in Upton, Wyo., Friday, July 5, 2019. He was 90.
Born June 20, 1929, in Melba, Idaho, to Franklin and Mary Ragains, Jim was one of nine children. He attended school in Melba and then he enlisted in the U.S. Army. A decorated combat war veteran, he received a marksman excellence award, an Army-Navy Production Award for World War II and a medal of accommodation for the Korean War, where he was in the 1st Armored Division.
Jim returned from overseas to California. He married Jackie Ebe on Sept. 19, 1953, in Los Angeles. They had three children, Rick, Terry and Vickie. They lived in California, running a Texaco station and racing stock cars before moving back to Idaho, to Kamiah, in 1970.
Jim delivered fuel for Chevron for several years before he and Jackie bought a cafe. They were the proud owners of JJ’s Cafe. Customers were friends and so were the many waitresses and cooks who worked alongside Jim and Jackie over the years. A gift given to them from staff upon retirement claimed they were the “World’s Greatest Bosses.”
He greeted everyone warmly and made friends easily. Jim enjoyed visiting with people, had a great sense of humor and a million sayings, many one-line zingers that were heard over and over though the years. What he loved most was being a grandparent — to his own grandchildren and their friends. Fondly referred to as G-pa, he was proud of all his grandchildren and then his great-grandchildren. The walls of his home were covered in photos of his family in frames he made.
Jim also loved to hunt, and the annual hunting trips included gathering his friends, his son and his friends, and then later his grandkids and their friends for the adventure.
Jim is survived by his brother, Marion (Caroline) Ragains, of California; his son, Terry Ragains, of Lewiston; his daughter, Vickie (Guy) Jackson, of Wyoming; and grandchildren Mitch Ragains (and family, of Washington), Tara Tibetts (and family, of Spokane Valley, Wash.), Samantha Skinner (and family, of Lewiston), Rickie Ragains (and family, of Spokane), Chase Jackson (and family, of Wyoming), Breeana Reiner (and family, of Lewiston), Tyler Jackson (and family, of Federal Way, Wash.) and Shasta Porter (and family, of Montana); and 21 great-grandchildren.
Jim was preceded in death by his wife, son Richard “Rick” Ragains, grandson Bucky Leach, daughter-in-law Tammy Ragains, his parents and seven of his siblings, Frankie, Zelpha, Floyd, Irene, Otto, Darrel and Virginia.
At his request, no service will be held. Trenary Funeral Home of Kooskia is handling the arrangements.