With enormous faith and courage, James E. Dailey, 85, Jefferson, has completed his journey here on earth. Jim passed away after a long and fruitful life on Thursday, March 12, 2020, just before sunrise at home on the family farm.
A small family funeral with Father Joe Vogel officiating will be at 10:30 a.m., Saturday, March 21, with a Knights of Columbus Honor Guard. Burial will follow in St. Peter’s Cemetery. A memorial Mass will be held at a later date.
Jim was born in Sioux City, Aug. 2, 1934 to Leonard and Helen (Gill) Dailey. He grew up on the family farm south of Jefferson and attended Island Grade School, Sioux City West Junior High and Sioux City Central High School. Graduating in 1952, he went on to South Dakota State University and received a bachelor’s degree in Animal Husbandry in 1956.
After graduation he became an assistant county agent in Davison County, Mitchell. While there, he met the love of his life, Judy Ann Wolf. They were united in marriage Tuesday, June 30, 1959, at Holy Family Catholic Church in Mitchell. After they were married, they moved home to the family farm at Jefferson. Jim was a SD National Guard member and was called to duty twice, to Ft. Riley, KS.
Jim began his farming career along with his father and brother, Richard, raising livestock, crops and vegetables. He was an entrepreneur in all ways, even constructing his own livestock buildings from concrete to carpentry, and owned an ag business selling a wide variety of farm equipment. He was an excellent teacher, cook and BBQ chef.
Jim was a dedicated church member serving on St. Peter’s Parish Council for several years and was a founding member of St. Peter’s Knights of Columbus, Council 11315. He was a community volunteer, having been a founding member of the SD Pork Producers Council, serving on both state and national boards. He was a lifelong 4-H advocate and member, winning several state and national awards. He served as a local 4-H leader for several years. Jim taught one semester of shop class at Elk Point High School in 1970.
Jim enjoyed woodworking and was a true craftsman. He also had a love of gardening and always grew a large garden with the help of the whole family. They sold vegetables, both on the farm and at local farmer’s markets.
Jim dedicated his retirement years to his family, church and the Knights of Columbus. Jim received the Family of the Year award from the SD Knights of Columbus, and a lifetime service award, aka the “Dailey” Award.
Jim became handicapped in 2007 and his wife Judy was his loving and dedicated care taker.
Left to honor his memory are his wife, Judy, of 60 years; son, Mike (Cathy) Dailey, of Jefferson; daughters, Sandy (Keith) Engen, of Lamberton, MN, Mary (Doug) Klar of Hill City, SD, Patty (Dave) Panzer of Pierre, SD, Jean (Brad) Mollet of Jefferson and Joan (Doug) Jacobson of Meridian, ID; grandchildren and great-grandchildren, Doug (Genevieve) Dailey and Madeline, Aurelia, Philip and Peter of Front Royal, VA, Elizabeth (Jacob) Naasz of Sioux Falls, Jennifer Dailey of Omaha, Mark (Kayce) Engen and Audria and Isaac of Brookings, Britta (Andrew) Julson of Killdeer, ND, Thea (Steve) McCone and Bentley, Houston and Hayes of Sanborn, MN, Fern (Sean) Hoffman of Bowdle, SD, Luke Engen of Lamberton, MN, Stephanie Klar (Brandon Waltemath) and River and Stella of Omaha, NE, Miranda Panzer of Onida, SD, Fisher (Erin) Mollet of Burnsville, MN, Noah Mollet of Tampa, FL, Eli, Sam, Ian and Dara Mollet of Jefferson, Danielle (Blake) Seever of Caldwell, ID and Karli, Lindsey and Molly Jacobson of Meridian, ID; brother, Richard (Peg) Dailey of Jefferson; sister-in-law, Linda Dailey of Woodbury, MN; brother-in-law, Paul (Sheron) Wolf of Waynesboro, PA; aunt, Edith Dailey of Dakota Dunes; and several cousins.
He was preceded in death by his parents; an infant daughter, Julie Ann; an infant grandson, Caleb Engen; his brother, Robert Dailey; and several aunts, uncles and cousins.
Kober Funeral Home of Elk Point has been entrusted with the services. Condolences may be posted online to www.koberfuneralhome.com