James Stephen Werfelmann, 69

| May 8, 2020 8:38 AM

James Stephen Werfelmann, 69, loving husband and father, passed away peacefully in Spokane, Wash., on Easter Sunday.

Friends and family remember Jim’s warm smile, sense of humor, generous spirit and passionate conversations as well as his love of good bourbon and choral music. He was proud of his life’s work as a consultant for hospital construction projects throughout the Pacific Northwest. His faith and personal relationship with God sustained and guided Jim through life, often expressed through the adage “only the good Lord knows.” Throughout his life, Jim was a faithful Christian and active member in the Lutheran Church.

Jim was the fifth-born among eight children of Rev. Arthur and Doris Werfelmann. Born in Libby in 1951, Jim spent his formative years developing the character and skills that would serve him throughout his life. As a pastor’s son, Jim learned the value of hard work and personal integrity. He carried fond memories of his time in Libby, especially hikes along the Kootenai River. It was in Libby that Jim developed a lifelong love of natural beauty.

Jim spent decades in the service of hospitals in Oregon as both a healthcare administrator and a private consultant. After earning a master’s degree in healthcare administration at the University of Minnesota, Jim began his career at Providence Medical Center in Portland, Ore., where for 19 years he held various leadership roles. In 1994, Jim established the consulting firm Werfelmann & Associates, which provided guidance to hospitals for facilities planning and development. His professional work culminated in the building of PeaceHealth Sacred Heart, a state-of-the-art regional medical center in Springfield, Ore. Jim served as an executive director for this $650 million construction project and took great pride in this accomplishment.

In his personal life, Jim was a kind and dedicated family man. He loved spending time with his wife and sons at home, church and on countless road trips across the western United States. He took pleasure in careful landscaping at home and could be found most weekends working out in the yard. Jim is survived by his beloved wife, Barbara; four sons, Adam, David, Robert and Matthew; four brothers, Arthur, Theodore, Philip and Mark; and sisters, Claudia and Kathy.

Memorial service plans are pending. Flowers and condolences can be sent to Holy Cross Lutheran Church c/o Barbara Werfelmann 7307 N. Nevada St., Spokane, WA 99208.