- About Us
James Newton Dean was born at home on April 25, 1929 in Garfield, Utah to Elijah “Clyde” Dean and Agatha Newton Dean. He had seven older siblings, Elden, Thelma, Midge, Max, Karl, Ray and Dick. Two years later the family had their ninth child, Marcia.
James was fond of his childhood and often told stories of his younger days. Being one of the youngest, he admired and deeply loved his siblings and family. He was a devoted brother, uncle, husband, father, and grandfather. He was a hard worker from the beginning, often working more than one job. He loved working alongside his father and brothers. Not only did he work with them, all of his free time was spent with family, usually playing cards. After the passing of his mother at age 13, his older sister, Midge, became a huge part of his life which continued until she passed.
At the age of 21, James was drafted into the Army during the Korean War. One of his favorite stories he shared was the boat ride over to Japan which took about a month. During this time, he became over $1,000 richer by beating his fellow soldiers in poker. Upon being honorably discharged from the Army, he immediately went back to work beside his family at Utah (Kennecott) Copper.
On Halloween night, 1952, James’ nephew, Gordon, set him up on a blind double date with Verna Bernice Arbon. They went for Chinese food; which James has always hated. From that night on, the two spent all of their free time together. March 28, 1953, at the age of 23, he married 16-year-old Verna, and would have celebrated their 65 anniversary later this month. They had three kids in four years, Peggy, Larry and Colleen. James continued to spend all his free time with his family, playing games in the back yard, going to the Homestead, building slides out of the snow, running through the irrigation water on the back lawn, fishing and an eventful prescribed California vacation.
While being a devoted Kennecott employee, his children married and gave him eight grandkids which he adored and loved to spend time with. After 39 years at Kennecott, he took an early retirement and spent his time with his kids and grandkids. Each one has special memories, but most involve playing cards, old fashion chocolate sodas, trips to Sunnybrook, and lots of food, especially sweets.
As the years went by, his family kept growing. He always had a special place in his heart for his 18 great-grandchildren, and always looked forward to their visits.
As he aged, he never slowed down. Even being in a wheelchair, he continued to mop the floors weekly, including the garage, clean the bathrooms, wash and wax the car anytime it had a spot on it, as well as shampooing and polishing furniture. He loved it when anyone would come and play cards and Chinese Checkers with him.
James was loved and admired by everyone that met him. Anyone that came to his door was treated like family, being offered a chocolate soda, food and candy. This included repair men, salesman and people delivering packages. James had an amazing heart, anyone who needed or wanted a place to live was welcomed with open arms.
Depending on the period of time you knew James, you could identify him by the outfit he wore. Up until retirement he always wore jeans and a t-shirt. Upon retirement until about 10 years ago, you would find him in gray or navy blue jumpsuits. For the past 10 years you could only find him in his black t-shirt and Playboy pajama pants.
We are all honored to have him as a part of our lives, he will be remembered always.
Funeral service will be held at 11:00am on Saturday, March 10, 2018 at the Holbrook Mortuary, 3251 South 2300 East, where friends may visit with the family from 9am to 10:30am prior to the service.
If you have a special memory of James, we would love you to share it on the Tribute Wall.