James Thilmont (age 90) passed away April 6, 2022, in Pocatello, Idaho, surrounded by his loving family. He is survived by his three children, Lisa, Matt (Loretta), and Greg, and his grandson, Maxwell; as well as his two sisters, Marie Stosur, 88, Frankfort, Illinois, and Diane Thilmont, 82, Miami, Florida.
Born in Chicago, Illinois, on December 23,1931, Jim was outgoing, friendly, and a savvy young business man right from the start. His first venture was delivering newspapers throughout the neighborhoods with his ‘best buddy’ and younger sister, Marie. The Thilmonts were a musical family and Jim learned to play the cello at an early age. In his teens, he was offered a scholarship to the Interlochen Music Institute. Although unable to pursue this, Jim enjoyed playing the cello for many years.
Jim also loved cycling, and after graduating from Morgan Park High School in the late-1940s, he and a close friend rode their bikes from Chicago to San Diego, setting record time for the journey and garnering news coverage by the Chicago Tribune of the event. Soon after completing their trip, Jim joined the Navy where he served in Atu, Alaska. In the 1950s, following his service, he hitchhiked to Florida and took advantage of the GI Bill to attend the University of Miami and earned a B.A. Degree in Business Administration. He then began work with General Mills as the state of Florida representative, and in subsequent years, for the Rogers Bros Idaho Potato Company.
In the mid-1960s, in Miami, Jim married Amelia ‘Mimi’ Klein. They moved to Georgia, and then eventually Idaho, first to Idaho Falls and then later settling in Pocatello. Together with his wife, Mimi, they established a number of enterprises - owning and managing restaurant franchises, automotive and real estate ventures in Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and Arizona.
Jim was a self starter, an adventurous entrepreneur and a highly successful business man. He was passionate about real estate and expanding opportunities. A proud Officer of the Rotary Club for many years, he was also engaged in civic endeavors and community programs.
Very sociable, engaging and a consummate storyteller, Jim developed many friendships throughout his life. Often meeting his buddies on the golf course or at vintage car rallies. He was an avid golfer and he began his fascination with vintage cars in the early-1960s when he and Mimi would cruise down the streets of Atlanta in their first Model T. He loved to travel and explored many parts of the globe in his later years. A risk taker, who liked to shake things up and live his life on his own terms. He will be deeply missed by his family and friends.