July 27, 1937 - July 12, 2017
A memorial will be held at Mary’s Woods, OR August, 11th at 2 pm, 17400 Holy Names Dr, Lake Oswego, OR 97034, Click HERE for directions
James Wilbor Cecil was born July 27, 1937, in Paris, Texas: the only child of Dorris Williams Cecil and Clyde Wilbor Cecil. The family lived in Dallas and then moved to Houston where Jim graduated from Lamar High School in 1955. Jim studied chemical engineering for four years at the University of Texas before leaving without a degree in 1959 to study at Baylor College of Medicine.
Jim married Judith Ann Hickman of Dallas on July 16, 1960 and they lived in Houston until he completed medical school in 1963. Then came a series of moves for medical training and military service: a one-year rotating internship at Philadelphia General Hospital; a three-year Internal Medicine residency at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN; two years of service as a Captain assigned to the 856th Medical Group at Beale Air Force Base in Marysville, CA; and a Hematology fellowship followed by a position at the University of Utah Medical Center in Salt Lake City. Jim later transferred to Holy Cross Hospital in Salt Lake City to help start the House Staff program before going into private practice. He was a dedicated and compassionate hematologist/oncologist who believed strongly in equal access to quality health care for all.
Wherever they lived, Jim and Judy made life-long friends and enjoyed new experiences, interesting people and beautiful places. They chose to stay in Salt Lake City to raise their family due to the life they created there, their love of the mountains, and the adventures to be had skiing, hiking and fishing on the rivers with family and friends. A devoted and much loved dog was a constant companion in most endeavors.
Jim was an idealist and fiercely independent. He often sought and found solace in nature. Following Judy’s death in 1989 Jim continued working a few years before retiring to enjoy his lifelong passions of gardening, fly fishing, reading, bird watching, traveling and cooking as well as a new interest in weaving at his home in Driggs, ID.
In 2003 he married Ulla Elisabet Thor and together they continued on life’s adventures, including a move to Portland, OR. Recently his declining health made physical activities difficult but he continued to be a keen observer and critic, using his computer to satisfy his curiosity and follow current events.
Jim was diagnosed with lung cancer May 31, 2017 and died at home July 12, 2017, supported by hospice and his family. He is survived by his wife Elisabet; his daughters Laura Ellen Cecil (Glenn Atwood), Susan Lydia Cecil (Dan Linton) and Katherine Elizabeth Cecil Fitch (Chris); and his grandson David Cecil Atwood.
A memorial will be held at Mary’s Woods, OR August, 11th at 2 pm. Family and friends are welcome. In lieu of flowers the family requests donations to Doctors Without Borders, the Southern Poverty Law Center or a charity of your choice.