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James Herrick Chalstrom Sept. 21, 1932 - March 10, 2017

March 15, 2017
Estherville News

AMES?- James Herrick Chalstrom age, 84, of Ames died at Mary Greeley Medical Center in Ames March 10, 2017. A gathering of friends and family will be 4:30 7 p.m. Friday, March 17, at Grandon Funeral and Cremation Care, 414 Lincoln Way in Ames with a celebration of life funeral service at 11:30 a.m. Saturday, March 18, Bethesda Lutheran Church, 1517 Northwestern Ave. Ames, with burial at Ames Municipal Cemetery.

James Herrick Chalstrom was born Sept. 21, 1932, to Lucy (Colt) and Oliver Floyd Chalstrom. After graduating from Estherville High School in 1950 and Estherville Junior College in 1952. He graduated from the University of Iowa with an Accounting major in 1954. He became a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) in 1957.

After working for CPA firms in Waterloo and Mason City, he opened his own firm in Algona. He then became Comptroller for Directory Service in Algona. In 1969 he became a budget officer for the State Comptroller's Office (later the Office of Management) in Ames and the state capitol in Des Moines. He retired from the State of Iowa in 1993, receiving recognition for his outstanding service from the Governor.

He was involved in leadership in the church and local and regional offices of the Iowa Jaycees. He hosted the Jaycees radio program in Algona. Active in music, he played in various band organizations, including church, school and the Des Moines Community band. He also sang in the Methodist Choir in Mason City. He enjoyed boating and fellowship with others at Chalstrom Beach on East Okoboji. He was an avid sports fan, particularly of the Iowa Hawkeyes and the St. Louis Cardinals. He covered and wrote sports news for the Estherville paper and the Mason City Globe Gazette.

Struggling with the challenges of polio as a child and then post-polio syndrome, he lived a courageous life. He served as chairman of the Iowa Commission for Persons with Disabilities. He was actively involved in changes locally, at his church, and throughout the state to remove physical as well as social and cultural barriers to inclusion of the disabled. He promoted the shift in thinking from focusing on those that are disabled, to thinking of those that are temporarily able-bodied, as we are all less than perfect.

He married an elementary school teacher, Marianne Louis Cook in Mason City on Easter Sunday, April 17, 1960. They enjoyed 56 years together, filled with travelling widely, visiting historical places around the country, and remaining active in causes they found important. They have two children Anne Marie Chalstrom (Minneapolis) and David James Chalstrom (Atlantic Beach, FL) and a grandson, Gavin James Chalstrom, to whom he was a dedicated father and grandfather.

He was preceded in death by infant sister and both parents. He is survived by his wife, children, grandson, sister and brother-in-law, Norma (Cook) and Burton Everist, and three nephews, Mark, Joel and Kirk Everist, their spouses and their children.

Memorials can be directed to Bethesda Lutheran Church Memorial Fund, Lutheran Services of Iowa (LSI), or Youth and Shelter Services of Ames.

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