Brooks, James Read

December 14, 1924 -  April 27, 2003 

Beloved father, grandfather, uncle and friend James Read Brooks, 78 of Pasadena, passed away peacefully at sunset of heart disease at Huntington Memorial Hospital on May 11, 2003. He was preceded in death by his loving wife of 57 years, Helen, who passed away on April 27, 2003 of Lou Gehrig's Disease (ALS). Born in Chicago on December 14, 1924, Jim fought valiantly in the U.S. Army in World World II in Germany in the 407th Infantry Division. After recuperating from serious war injuries in Springfield, Missouri, he returned to the University of Illinois where he fell in love with f ellow Daily Illini Sports Reporter Helen Green. He graduated with a Communications Degree in 1947. They were married Dec. 21, 1946 at North Shore Baptist Church in Chicago. In the late forties and early fifties, Jim worked as a reporter for the Chicago Herald-American, public relations manager for Needham, Louis and Brorby advertising agency, Chicago, and, director of public relations for Ecko Products Company, Chicago. In 1959, he and Mrs. Brooks bought The Gilbert Enterprise (Az) and launched his career a s a newspaper editor of weekly community newspapers in Arizona. Additionally, he purchased the Apache Sentinel, Copper Basin News, Superior Sun and Maryvale Times and South Phoenix Round-Up and incorporated as Brooks Newspapers Inc. Active in the journalism trade in the Phoenix area, Jim was president of Sigma Delta Chi and also the Arizona Newspaper Publishers Association. In 1967, he sold the chain of newspapers and moved to California where he worked as editor for several California newspapers: Fremont N ews-Register, Oakland Tribune, Hayward Daily Review, San Diego Union-Tribune, and the Palm Springs Desert Sun. He retired from the Contra Costa Times as chief editorial writer and associate editor in 1989. He was a member of the Power Squadron and Disabled Veterans of America. He and his wife retired to the desert in 1989 and moved to Pasadena in 2001 to be closer to family. He is survived by his daughters, Wendy Leece of Costa Mesa and Diane and Patrick Dixon of Pasadena; grandchildren, Colleen Brooks Dixo n and Bret and Blithe Leece, Pasadena; Megan Leece, Huntington Beach, and Stephen, Amy and Emily Leece of Costa Mesa. His brother, Donald W., resides in Plainfield, Ill

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