James Arnold Anderson of La Crosse, Wis., died Dec. 18, 2016, at the age of 92, surrounded in love by members of his family.
James was born Aug. 15, 1924, in Poynette, Wis., to Elmer Anderson and Anna Lyster Anderson. He married Ruth L. (Aas) Anderson ‘50, his wife of 66 years, Sept. 5, 1950.
He graduated from Luther College in Decorah, Iowa, and earned the M.A. degree at the University of Minnesota, and the Ph.D. in sociology from the University of Wisconsin, specializing in rural sociology.
James taught sociology at Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kan., from 1954 to 1960, and at the University of Wisconsin-La Crosse from 1960 to 1988. During his last four years at UW-L, he served as associate dean of the College of Arts, Letter, and Sciences. He was a Fellow of the American Sociological Association.
James believed in institutions and worked on their behalf. He served on the board of trustees of La Crosse Lutheran Hospital, the board of directors of the La Crosse Lutheran Hospital Foundation, the board of trustees of Carthage College in Kenosha, Wis., the board of trustees of Lutheran Campus Ministry of Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, on the board of directors of Norskedalen, and on the church council of English Lutheran Church, where he was a member for 55 years.
He will be remembered as a man who did good work, a man committed to education, a man committed to his community, a man of faith, and a man who loved, and was loved by, his family.
James is survived by his wife of 66 years, Ruth L. (Aas) Anderson ‘50; four grateful children, Judy Anderson and husband, Kim Brown of Fort Myers, Fla.; David Anderson and wife, Priscilla Paton of Northfield, Minn.; Paul Anderson ‘76 and wife, Kathy Anderson of Wausau, Wis.; and the Rev. Mark Anderson ‘85 and wife, Beverly (Stark) Anderson ‘85 of Waverly, Iowa; and by five loving grandchildren, James Anderson and wife, Ishanaa Rambachan of Washington, D.C.; Marta Brown of Fort Meyers, Elizabeth Anderson of Washington, D.C.; Kelly Smisek and husband, Andy of San Diego; Kristi Anderson of Wausau; and Michelle Anderson of Minneapolis; and by stepgrandchild, Samantha Streeter and her children, Macy, Alice and Mackenzie; by sisters, Shirley Benzine of Rio, Wis., and Joyce Lienke and husband, Merlyn of Columbus, Wis.; by sister-in-law, Eunice Anderson of Stoughton, Wis., and by many nieces and nephews.
James was preceded in death by his brother, Marvin; and his sister, Arlene.
Both the visitation and funeral service were held Dec. 23, 2016, at English Lutheran Church in La Crosse. Pastor Mark Solyst officiated. A private burial was in Westby.
The Schumacher-Kish Funeral & Cremation Service of La Crosse, was in charge of arrangements. Online guestbook is available at www.schumacher-kish.com.
Memorials may be given to the Mission Endowment Fund of English Lutheran Church.