James D. Milton

James “Jim” D. Milton, age 81, died peacefully on November 24, 2019 at Ecumen in North Branch. Jim is survived by his devoted wife Carol of nearly 60 years; his adoring daughters, Monique Milton (Steve Kes) of Harris, MN and Kirsten Richardson (Mark A.) of Flower Mound, TX; his sister Elizabeth Richman (Lorne); Aunt Elaine (Sig) Malik; and sister-in-law Georgia (Sam) Stafford. He has eight loving grandchildren, Brandon Milton (Nikki Shinler), Micah Harris, Evan Harris, Tanner (Caitlyn) Fought, Tyler Fought, Madison Mills, Kallyn Mills, Gracie Mills, and one great-grandchild Ella Fought. Cherished in-laws, nieces, nephews, cousins, and extended family and friends. He is preceded in death by his parents, Wilbur and Rose Milton; brother Bill Milton; sister Martha Usatine; and loving son James D. Milton II “Jimmy II.” Jim was born in the fall of 1938 in St. Paul, Minnesota, to parents Rose and Wilbur Milton. He graduated from Mounds View High School in 1956. Jim was a very ambitious person at a young age, he worked very hard to help support his family. He started as an entrepreneur at 11 years old, with a sizable year-round paper route, plus he worked many odd jobs before and after school. As an adult, Jim worked for Minneapolis Moline and a few other small construction companies before starting his own contracting business. Jim also owned the Sawmill in Harris for several years. For most of Jim’s life, he was a proud member of the Local 548 Millwright and Machine Erectors Union. Jim was an extraordinary family man and a loving father and grandfather. He married Carol Ketchel in 1960 and the couple had three children together. In 1965, Jim, Carol and family purchased their dream hobby farm in the St. Croix River valley in Harris. Soon after, Jim became an active member of the Harris Volunteer Fire Department. Jim and Carol farmed and raised registered Poled Hereford cattle for many years. Being a good steward of the land was important to Jim, he truly loved the natural beauty of the St. Croix Valley. In 1989, he started “JD Well Drilling” business with his only son Jim Milton II, and enjoyed working alongside his son and growing that business until 1999. After he retired, Jim typically traveled the country (wintertime) to see his family in Texas, Arizona, and Mississippi to name a few. Jim had friends everywhere he went. His favorite time of year was deer hunting season, he would always take time off for hunting. He enjoyed hunting with many family members and friends over the years. Jim was an excellent marksman with a dead eye, and almost every year he brought home a deer. Memorial services were held at 4 p.m. on Saturday, November 30, 2019 at the Grandstrand Funeral Home in North Branch with Pastor Louis James officiating. Interment was held at St. Joseph Catholic Cemetery in North Branch. Arrangements were under the direction and care of Grandstrand Funeral Home in North Branch. Condolences may be expressed online at www.grandstrandfh.com.

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