It is with heavy hearts that we announce the sudden passing of Martin James (Jim) Rymes on Tuesday, May 5, 2020 at Thunder Bay Regional Sciences Centre at the age of 91.
Jim was born on May 28, 1928 in Port Arthur to Charles and Mabel Rymes. Raised at Bare Point (upstairs in the Port Arthur Transmission Station), Jim attended St. Andrews School and Port Arthur Technical School. He began his career with Ontario Hydro on a travelling construction crew as an Electrical Journeyman. Later Jim (or M.J. as his friends called him) was a Maintenance Electrical Journeyman and a Foreman working out of the Thunder Bay Generating Station and at Burwood Maintenance Centre. Jim retired after 42 years of service as an Electrical Specialist at the Ontario Hydro Northwestern Regional Office.
Jim married the love of his life Felicia (Phyllis) Bechencke and together they raised three sons; Edward, Richard, David, and a daughter Susan. Jim was a kind soul, always willing to help others out and he had a great sense of humour. He was devoted to his family and was an excellent role model with his strong work ethic. A talented man who could do anything, Jim built his own camps, one at Pete’s Lake and later at Amethyst Heights on Lake Superior and even built his own sail boat. In the early days Jim and Phyllis enjoyed bowling, curling and most especially family get togethers at the camp. Jim loved spending time with his grandchildren, often hanging out in the basement workshop having the kids ‘sort’ screws and help him with a project. He attended all their piano recitals, soccer games and loved the hockey games. He was proud of the accomplishments of all his grandchildren and so enjoyed all our family celebrations. He always loved our family ritual of meeting up at Niva’s for a big plate of Finnish pancakes no matter what time of day. He loved his dogs with his last being Casey who was his loyal companion for 17 years. Once Jim retired, he and Phyllis enjoyed wintering in Tucson, Arizona golfing and spending time with Phyllis’ brother Eddy and sister-in-law Joyce and family. It was after retirement that Jim demonstrated his amazing artistic abilities when he took up wood carving, intarsia woodworking, pen and ink drawing, and water colour painting.
For over 6 years Jim and Phyllis enjoyed residing at Chartwell on Arundel Street and this past November Jim moved into Pioneer Ridge Plaza 1.
Jim is predeceased by his parents, Mabel and Charles Rymes, son David, sister Marie and brother-in-law Bob Metcalf, brothers and sisters-in-law Bob and Fran Rymes, Bill and Dorothy Rymes, Larry and Kitsy Rymes; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law Eddy and Joyce Beck, and John and Wanda Martinuzzi. Jim will be sadly missed and lovingly remembered by his wife of 68 years Phyllis, his sons Ed Rymes (Suzanne), Rick Rymes, daughter Sue Rob (Art), and daughter-in-law Brenda Rymes; grandchildren Jonathan and Vanessa Rymes, Kristi Green (Adam), Katrina Smart (Ian), Neil and Justin Rob, as well as great-grandchildren Austin, Samantha, Mackenzie and Emerson. Jim will also be lovingly remembered by his many nieces and nephews in Canada and the U.S.
As per Jim’s wishes, cremation has taken place. A celebration of life will be held at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, if you wish, please donate to the Alzheimer’s Society of Thunder Bay.
The family wish to extend their most sincere appreciation to the wonderful, caring staff at Chartwell Retirement Residence and at Pioneer Ridge Long-Term Care - Plaza 1. Special thanks to Jim and Phyllis’ long time doctor, Dr. David Johnson, and in recent years, Dr. Jonathan Koo, for their excellent care.