MISSOULA – James W. Gaul, of Missoula, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 11, 2010, from natural causes.
Jim was born on Feb. 8, 1922, in Butte, to John C. and Nell Walker Gaul, and as the son of a superintendent of mines for the Anaconda Mining Co., grew up in the rich tradition of Butte mining. Jim graduated from St. Lawrence Grade School and Boys Central High School. He attended the University of Michigan and later transferred to and graduated from the University of Montana.
As with many of his generation, Jim’s education was put on hold when World War II broke out. He entered the U.S. Navy, and later transferred to the Army Air Corps where he served as a waist gunner on B-17 missions over Italy, France and Germany.
In 1947, Jim married Elvira (Vi) Sullaway in Butte, and later moved to Missoula, where he was employed by the Montana Power Co. for 35 years. During their lives together, Jim and Vi had six children, John Gaul (Patty) of Spokane, Wash., Martha Anderson (Ron) of Missoula, Bill Gaul (Kathy) of Missoula, Jamie Gaul (deceased), Frank Gaul (Nancy) of Butte, and Joan Jensen of Missoula.
Jim’s joy in life came from his faith and his family. He had many interests, but some he pursued with passion most notably golf, traveling, following the Grizzlies, his flower garden and the Atlanta Braves. With his warm and engaging personality he made friends quickly and often and remained steadfastly proud of his Butte heritage.
In addition to his children, Jim is survived by 16 grandchildren, Mark Gaul (Lisa), Erin Boland (Jon), Ryan, Michael and Evan Gaul, M’Lissa Anderson, Stephanie Huse (Shawn), Vincent Anderson, Brian, Corey, Caitlin and Meaghan Gaul, Amy Pickett (Neale), Kristen Vandling, and Samantha and Clair Jensen. He is also survived by nine great-grandchildren, Brian, Jessi B. and Matthew Gaul, Silas, Jude and Eliza Boland, Molly and Matthew Huse, and Gwendolyn Pickett; brother-in-law William F. Sullaway and his wife Marg of La Jolla, Calif.; and the Harris family, Ryan, Lee, Gail, Sheila, Sherry and Tom. Jim also leaves behind his special friends Lu Gollier and George Sherry.
Jim’s family would like to extend a special thank you to Joyce Anderson, Dorothy Flynn, Dr. Michael Priddy and staff, Partners in Home Care Hospice and the staff at the Bee Hive for taking special interest and making Jim more comfortable during his final months.
Cremation was Jim’s wish.
Memorials can be made in his name to the Watson Children’s Center, or Our Lady of the Rockies.
Condolences for the family can be sent to Garden City Funeral Home, 1705 W. Broadway, Missoula MT 59808.
Sign up to get the most recent local obituaries delivered to your inbox.