James John “Jim” Lundon, 92, of Crookston, MN, passed away early Thanksgiving evening, November 24, 2022, with his loving family at his side.
Jim was born on September 10, 1930, on a farm in Hegne township of Norman County, between the towns of Hendrum and Ada, MN. The son of David and Mary (Cahalan) Lundon, Jim grew up on farms in the Ada area during the 1930’s-40’s. There were some hard years after the family’s home burned to the ground in 1935 and they lost everything they owned. They then moved to the Gary, MN area and Jim attended a country school near the junctions of MN Highways 32 and 200 in a building that remains a landmark to this day. He later attended St. Michael School in Mahnomen before the family relocated to Lockhart, MN and Jim attended school in Ada. In 1949-50 Jim was employed at Gambles Farm Equipment and Cockshutt Farm Equipment in Fargo, ND.
A few years later he set eyes on a pretty young lady while at a gathering of young people. He told a co-worker the next day that he saw the girl he was going to marry; the only problem was he forgot her name. He soon learned she was Eleanor Rae Turner and for Jim it was love at first sight. For Eleanor not so much. She said you don’t know me and I don’t know you! Jim wasn’t discouraged at all and on June 20, 1953, the two were united in marriage at the Covenant Church in Kennedy, MN. Over the years their marriage would be blessed by the births of the 3 S’s: Sharon, Shirley, and Sharlene. Jim and Eleanor first lived in Nielsville, MN where he worked doing road construction. When that work moved up north they moved to Lancaster, MN and lived with Eleanor’s parents while Jim was employed at a local garage there for the winter months. Spring road construction brought them to Halstad, MN before moving to Crookston in 1954. He then worked for the Great Northern Railroad and later handled sales for Midwest Farm Equipment serving customers while covering the Crookston Territory. In 1960 he began a 26-year career in agricultural related sales for Lindsay Brothers and traveled throughout the Red River Valley. In 1986 he established Lundon Distributing doing the same thing he had always done, but this time doing it for himself. In 2000 he partnered with a Canadian associate named Adolf Vaagas and began selling a piece of farm equipment he invented and named the Triple “S” Ditcher. When they decided to end their partnership Adolf took over the Canadian side of sales for the equipment while Jim took the USA patent and handled marketing and sales, while exhibiting at agriculture shows throughout the country. He later sold his business but continued to help out at the shows.
A highlight of Jim’s life was taking the 3 S’s to Ireland as part of a contingent of 121 Lundons. They enjoyed spending many days searching out their Lundon roots and eventually met an Ireland cousin by the name of Mike Lundon. Jim and his daughter, Sharon, have continued to remain in touch with Mike and a few other cousins to this day, and hosted them on their past visits to America. Love for Eleanor and their growing family remained Jim’s lifelong pride, as was his Irish heritage and the family name Lundon. St. Patrick’s Day was a holiday he always looked forward to. Jim loved planting and growing potatoes and did his darndest to get the planting done between St. Patrick’s Day and Good Friday. Even when he had to clear snow from the ground and work the frozen soil he would smile and give one of his famous winks because with a little luck of the Irish he always got it done.
Jim is survived by Eleanor, his beloved wife of 69 years; and proudly by their 3 daughters: Sharon and John Peters of Frazee, MN, Shirley and Tom Smith of Litchfield, MN and Sharlene Cole (Kurt Heldstab) of Crookston, MN; 9 grandchildren and 26 great-grandchildren: Tracy and Brian Kleespies and children, Ben, Nate, and Lexie; Angela and Eli Paluga and children, Jorga, Maverick, and Colt; Lana and Aaron Bendickson and children, MacKenzie, Kaylee, Kora, and Klay; Stacie and Brian Jones and their children, Ellery and Calvin; Zachary and Patty Smith and their children, Maizy, Mason, and Madilyn; Hannah and Jared Laidlaw and their children, Breck, Lundon, McCoy, Parker, and Aliza; Tyler and Zarie Smith and their children, Ella, Hadley, and Caden Smith; Matthew Cole (Andrea) and his children, Emily and Cora; and Lindsey Cole and her son, Griffen. Jim also leaves a sister and brother-in-law, Florence and Jack Donaldson of Apple Valley, CA; brother, Mike Lundon of St. Peter, MN; sister-in-law, Doris Lundon of Bemidji, MN; from Eleanor’s family, sister-in-law, Beverly Turner of Grand Forks, ND; and many nieces, nephews, extended family, and a host of friends of all ages. Jim was preceded in death by his parents, David and Mary Lundon; son-in-law, Roger Cole; a great granddaughter, little Eleanor Evonne Bendickson; 2 brothers and a sister-in-law, David Lundon and John and Joy Lundon; an infant sister, Elizabeth, who died shortly after birth; and from Eleanor’s family, parents-in-law, David and Sayde Turner; and 2 brothers and a sister-in-law, Wayne and Doris Turner and Derrold Turner. May God richly bless the memory of James John Lundon.
The funeral service celebrating Jim’s life will be held at 2:00 p.m., Friday, December 2, 2022, at the Wesley United Methodist Church in Crookston with The Rev. Ruth Sanders, officiating. Visitation will be from 12:30 to 2:00 p.m. The funeral will be livestreamed by going to Jim’s obituary page at www.stenshoelhouske.com and clicking on the prompt to view. Burial will take place in the Oakdale Cemetery, Crookston. Messages of condolence may be offered to Eleanor and family at the funeral home’s website. In lieu of flowers memorials may be given in Jim’s name to the Wesley United Methodist Church, Benedictine Living Community Crookston (Villa St. Vincent), Hospice of the Red River Valley, or the charity of your choice.
Friday, December 2, 2022
Starts at 2:00 pm (Central time)
Wesley United Methodist Church
The funeral service will be at 2:00 pm, Friday, December 2, 2022 at the Wesley United Methodist Church in Crookston with The Rev. Ruth Sanders, officiating. Visitation will be from 12:30 to 2:00 pm.