Cover photo for James Sage's Obituary
James Sage Profile Photo

James Sage

d. March 9, 2017

James Sherman Sage "Jim" of Alpine TX, died Friday, March 3, 2017. Jim was born on a farm in Boyd, MT, December 8, 1926, the son of James "Art" and Mabel Sage. Jim was loved from day one. His mother, Mabel, wrote in his baby book on March 28, 1929, "Jimmie laughed out loud several times while Mother and Grandma Sage were playing with him. Sounded like angels playing their harps."
Jim graduated from Grossmont High School, San Diego, CA, and then enlisted in the Army-Airforce at the end of WWII and was stationed in Adak, Alaska. After the war, he returned to Billings MT, where his parents and sister lived. On June 2, 1950, he married Frances Kellogg Sage and they had two children, Steve and Sandy. Jim and Fran had been married 66 years.
In 1966 the family moved to Austin TX so he and Fran could pursue degrees from the University of Texas. After receiving his BA and MA, he found employment as the Foreign Student Advisor at St Edward's University. He went above and beyond to help the students and enjoyed learning about all parts of the world. Eventually, he took on a second job with Austin Community College.
Both he and Fran loved the Big Bend area of west Texas and retired to the Alpine area in 1995. They felt fortunate to have been able to have a house built with a wonderful view of Cathedral Mountain in the South Double Diamond. In fact, Jim loved this area so much that he entitled the book he wrote, "Living in Paradise, Essays from the Chihuahuan Desert."
Jim was known for his smile, his kind spirit, and his appreciation of nature. He was active in community affairs, a lover of art, a book reader, and co-founder with his wife Fran of the Big Bend group of the Sierra Club.

As Jim was gradually slipping away from us, his friend wrote to him one day, "I guess you're feeling like my grandmother did when she was your age, like you're sitting on your suitcase by the side of the dusty road, waiting for the bus to come pick you up and take you away from this world to whatever is next. I can understand that, but this world will be a poorer place without you, and we will miss you!"
He is preceded in death by his parents Art and Mabel Sage, his sister Roberta Abel, and his beloved cat Felina. Survivors include his wife Fran Sage; daughter Sandy Sage, Alpine TX; son Steve Sage, Austin TX; grandson Sam Lamport, Portland OR; and niece Lynn Clifford (Gary), Woodlands, TX.
A Celebration of Jim's life (open house), will be held at his home in the South Double Diamond on Saturday, March 18 from 2:00-4:00 pm. Without the love and support of their friends and the community, Jim and Fran wouldn't have been able to continue living in their home after their health declined. The family requests in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Big Bend Conservancy,
Jim asked his daughter Sandy to share one of his favorite poems at his passing. It is by his favorite painter, Maynard Dixon. "At last, I shall give myself to the desert again that I, in its golden dust, may be blown from a barren peak broadcast over the sun-lands. If you should desire some news of me go ask the little horned toad whose home is in the dust or seek it among the fragrant sage, or question the mountain juniper and by their silence they will truly inform you."

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