Steamboat Springs resident Bill James died at age 75 on June 16, 2008, at a Denver hospital. His wife, Gloria, was at his side.
Bill was born Oct. 16, 1932. He received his bachelor's and law degrees from Washington University in St. Louis, where he grew up.
Bill learned to ride horses at Camp Roundup in Colorado when he was 7, and horseback riding became his passion in grade school, high school and college. He participated in many horse shows in the Midwest and became a member of the U.S. Olympic Equestrian Team in 1952.
His career was primarily as a "Crime Fighter." He was in the FBI for three years. During the next 14 years, he served as Chief Assistant U.S. Attorney and then as director of the Strike Force Office in Tampa, Fla. In 1984, Bill was elected State Attorney, defeating a 16-year incumbent. Before he took office, the office was ranked last among the State Attorneys' offices in sending people to state prison. Under Bill's tenure, his office ranked first in successful prosecution. He was re-elected in 1988.
In 1992, Bill and Chris Hoyer established the law firm James, Hoyer and Newcomer. The firm still bears his name, though Bill retired in 1995 and moved to Steamboat Springs, where he enjoyed hiking and skiing. Since coming to Steamboat, Bill volunteered at United Methodist Church, Humble Ranch Education and Therapy Center, LIFT-UP of Routt County and Yampa Valley Medical Center.
Bill is survived by his daughter Christy; son Bruce; daughter-in-law Barbara; grandsons, Finnegan and Claes; two sons-in-law; a sister and brother-in-law; one niece; three nephews; a great-niece and great-nephews. He was preceded in death by his parents, Dr. and Mrs. William M. James, and his daughter Jaime.
In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to United Methodist Church Foundation, a fund used to help people in need, or Humble Ranch Education and Therapy Center. In the memo line for Humble Ranch, please put "the James Scholarship Fund," which was established in 2005 in memory of Jaime James.
A celebration of Bill's life will be held at 2 p.m. Friday at United Methodist Church in Steamboat.