Obituary: THORN, JAMES ASHEL

Published: Saturday, Aug. 23 2014 7:34 a.m. MDT

James Ashel Thorn 1931 ~ 2011

James Ashel Thorn, 79, died of colon cancer on August 4, 2011 at home surrounded by his loving wife and family. From the time he was young to the time of his death, Jim had an abundance of friends who now mourn his passing.He was born September 18, 1931 in Springville, Utah to Paul A. and Madge Johnson Thorn. He married Karen Frances White on May 8, 1953. Their marriage was solemnized in the Salt Lake Temple on September 8, 1989 where all of their six adult children were sealed to them. This event was a highlight of Jim's life. He celebrated it annually by taking his family to various Temples around the country to do Temple work. Jim was an all-star athlete. He played football and basketball for Springville High School. He went on to attend Brigham Young University with a major in Business and emphasis in Industrial Relations. While there he played tennis, ran track, but his most memorable achievement was playing BYU Basketball under the direction of Coach Stan Watts. In 1951 they won the National Invitational Tournament (NIT) Championship. He and his teammates were later inducted into the BYU Athletic Hall of Fame. He was a member of the Cougar Club, season ticket holder, and avid BYU fan. Shortly after he was married, Jim was drafted into the United States Army. During the Korean conflict he served as a member of the Army Transportation Division. Later he was transferred to the Special Services Division where he played basketball and baseball for the All European Army Teams. He was awarded MVP playing ball for the troops. He played in many semi-pro exhibition games. While playing baseball he was drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers. Jim spent most of his adult life in the construction industry. During the 50's and 60's, family owned Thorn Construction Company built many of Utah's highways which Jim supervised. He completed his career selling heavy construction equipment until his retirement. He was a member of the Kiwanis and Rotary Clubs. Jim was a member of the LDS Church. He loved his family and was a devoted husband. He enjoyed traveling, especially with his wife and family on their annual Temple Retreats. He had a deep sense of honor. He looked for integrity in people, and was respected by many. We will miss his quick wit and good humor. Survived by his wife Karen of Springville; children: Debra (Dennis) DeRose of Draper; Richard (Sherrie) Thorn of Herriman; Ryan (Robin) Thorn of South Jordan; Emily (Brent) Wiscombe of Orem; Kyle Thorn of Springville; Karalee (Lindsay) Peterson of Mapleton; 17 grandchildren; 12 great-grandchildren. Also survived by brother, Robert P. Thorn of Bountiful, sister, June Arbon of Camarillo, CA. Preceded in death by brother Louis Thorn. Funeral Services will be Monday, August 8, 2011 at 11:00 a.m. in the Springville 2nd Ward Chapel, 1785 E. 400 S. Viewing will be held at Wheeler Mortuary, 211 E. 200 S. Sun., August 7th from 6-8 p.m. or at the church from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. Interment, Spanish Fork Cemetery. The family wishes to express thanks and appreciation to Sunbrook Hospice and staff for their special care. Condolences may be sent at www.wheelermortuary.com