James Mark Stillman, passed away unexpectedly at age 63 of natural causes at his home in Brownton, Minnesota on February 23, 2023. A celebration of his life will be held at the Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home, 122 1st Ave NE Glenwood, MN 56334 on Friday, March 10, 2023. Visitation will be from 1:00 to 2:00 PM and funeral at 2:00. Inurnment will take place in the spring at Lake Amelia Cemetery in rural Villard. Arrangements are with the Hoplin-Hitchcock Funeral Home in Glenwood.
Jim, the youngest of seven children, was born in Minneapolis, Minnesota on March 26, 1959, to Dwayne and June (Anderson) Stillman. Jim graduated from Jefferson Senior High School, Bloomington, Minnesota in 1977. He earned a diploma in Fluid Power Technology from Hennepin Technical College in 1990 receiving the “Outstanding Student Award.” He passed the certification examination and was registered as a Certified Fluid Power Specialist in May 1990 and maintained HS (Hydraulic Specialist) certification until retirement. Jim was a member of the International Fluid Power Society. Jim worked as a Tech in the testing department at Eaton’s Eden Prairie Minnesota campus from 1993-2018, retiring after 25 years of service.
Jim was a country boy, at home in jeans and a T-shirt. He loved country living, loved studying the stars above his country home. He could identify a train by its whistle. He excavated the basement under his house and added a room addition. He chopped wood to help heat the house. He hosted family get-togethers and BBQs for friends. The secret ingredient in his home-made cookies was almond flavoring.
He loved his Mom and got a big kick out of the fact that she was a tomboy as a girl. He loved her prayers but did not like her to remind him of his faith. But when a friend felt sad, he told her to read the Bible. He admired his Dad, valued his intelligence and was proud of his Dad’s poetic writings. He inherited this poetic ability, writing a song for a friend. Jim was a John Prine fan and a collector of guitars. He was fascinated by motors, tiny to huge, from miniature trains to motorcycles. He restored a 1935 Indian motorcycle. He built a skip loader. After his Dad died, he used it to help grade around the foundation of his parent’s home so the basement wouldn’t leak in the rain. He wanted his Mom to live in the house comfortably after his Dad died.
Jim rescued animals, especially cats, that were “dropped off” on his country road, making sure they received veterinary care, then keeping or giving them away to deserving homes. At one time he raised chickens. He was awed the year thousands of monarch butterflies migrated through his property, covering the branches of his trees and excitedly shared the event with family and friends.
Jim’s family will miss his crooked smile, his penchant for practical jokes, and his infectious laugh.
Jim is survived by his sisters Kathleen (Bob) Clapper, Bonnie Stillman, Mary Stillman, and Martha (John) Boughton; his brothers, Jeffrey (Deana) Stillman, and John (Joy) Stillman; and many nephews and nieces.
He was preceded in death by his parents.
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