Whitman County Gazette - Serving Whitman County since 1877

James L. Kerns


June 6, 2019

A memorial service for James L. Kerns, 69, Potlatch, will be at the Garfield Christian Fellowship Church, at 11 a.m. Saturday, June 8. A reception will follow.

Mr. Kerns died on the family farm May 20, 2019, of advanced Parkinson's disease.

Born Dec. 6, 1949, at Swalwell, Alberta, Canada, to James C. and Gladys Tory Keay Kerns, he moved with his family to Garfield in 1950 and to the family farm at Potlatch in 1952.

He attended Potlatch schools and graduated in 1968. He attended the University of Idaho and joined the National Guard in 1971.

He and Deborah Lee were married Nov. 21, 1970, in Potlatch. During their 48 years of marriage, they raised three children.

In 1977, the family moved to Jim's childhood home on the farm, where he lived until his death. He farmed in the Potlatch and Garfield areas.

He enjoyed playing basketball and played on town teams, in Sunday pickup games and in Hoop Fest. He coached his sons and their friends in pee-wee baseball, Little League and Babe Ruth baseball.

In 1990, he started coaching basketball at Potlatch Jr.-Sr. High School.

Surviving are his mother; his wife, Debbie; sons, Ty and Kevin; daughter, Shelby; daughters-in-law, Teresa and Meyanka; brothers, Robert, David and Richard; a sister, Gladys, and two grandchildren.

The family suggests memorial donations go to the Potlatch Ambulance Fund, PO Box 63, Potlatch, 83855; Coast Transportation, 210 S. Main Street, Colfax, 99111, or a hospice of the donor's choice.


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