Kile, James S.

Here is the link to Jim’s obituary, also printed below.   The online obituary has a guestbook, with entries from non-Williams friends. Please note that an open house to celebrate Jim’s life will be held Saturday, January 16, 2016 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Jim and Sally’s home.


Obituary for Jim Kile

James S. “Jim” Kile of Estes Park passed away December 6. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Sarah “Sally” Kile, son Steven (Jennifer) Kile of Fort Collins and daughter Tracy (Tim) Kile Schwartz of Fort Collins. He was Grampaw to three grandsons, Ryan, Noah and Jason, and two granddaughters, Audrey and Elise.

Jim was a man of deep love, integrity, humor and joy. He was smart yet humble, and quick to share credit for his own accomplishments. He worked hard to provide for his family and instill in his children and grandchildren values for education, hard work, exploration and pursuit of varied passions. He believed in “paying it forward” and inspired others to do so as well.

Jim was born in Berea, Ohio in November 1944 to Jim Kile, Sr. and Doris Ruby Kile. His parents and his sister, Patricia Kile Zaski, preceded him in death.

He met the love of his life, Sally Smead, in 8th grade. They both graduated high school in Toledo, Ohio in 1962 and sustained their relationship through college; both attended schools in western Massachusetts. Jim earned a bachelor’s degree in American History and Literature in 1967 from Williams College.

Realizing that his draft number could be drawn anytime for the Vietnam War, Jim enlisted in the Naval Reserve in 1964, participating in Officer Candidate School during summers. He was first stationed on the destroyer USS Twining in San Francisco Bay while Sally was doing an internship for graduate school in New York City. Being separated by such a distance proved too difficult, so Jim proposed, and Sally transferred to UC Berkeley to complete her MSW. Their early marriage was tested – and strengthened – by additional distances, including his time serving in Vietnam on the hospital ship USS Repose.

Following honorable discharge and return to civilian life, Jim entered residential real estate sales in Oakland, California, where he found mentors whom he credited throughout his career. He and Sally backpacked and scuba-dived all over Northern California, and welcomed their two children while living there. In 1977, the family moved to Incline Village, Nevada, on the north shore of Lake Tahoe, where they lived until 1988. There, he taught his children a love for nature and the outdoors, including camping, skiing, hiking, swimming and boating. He expanded his real estate experience by founding two residential real estate offices and through the development of commercial property. He earned respect for his quiet leadership, sense of fairness, and good judgment. He taught and monitored ethics for the real estate board, drawing from his clear moral center. Jim supported his children’s activities by volunteering on youth activities boards, coaching baseball and encouraging their musical endeavors.

In 1988, the family moved to Fort Collins, Colorado, where Jim and Sally lived until building their current home in Estes Park in 2004. They enjoyed adventures together around the U.S., and explored many parts of the world. His favorite times were with his extended family.

Jim’s gregarious personality made him the life of any party, with a twinkle in his eye and bad pun at the ready. He loved playing, coaching, and watching baseball; the family’s numerous large and doting dogs; sailing and boating; reading to his grandchildren; gathering and laughing with family; making new friends and reconnecting with old friends. His deep and lasting love for his family will be felt for generations through the legacy of his values and generosity.

In lieu of flowers, the family encourages donations to charitable causes in Jim’s memory. An open house to celebrate Jim’s life will be held Saturday, January 16, 2016 from 11 a.m. – 3 p.m. at Jim and Sally’s home.

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