James was born tenth, of eleven children, to Charles and Mary Jane. He grew up in south Minneapolis,MN attending the family's parish elementary school of Annunciation, then on to Washburn High School and St. Thomas University.He utilized his intelligence and photographic memory graduating in four years with a double major in theology and philosophy. He had a desire to travel Europe at a young age. James had two paper routes as a teen to earn money to take a trip with his sister Bridget to Ireland. After graduating from college he headed to Rome. There and throughout Europe he toured one cathedral after another, painting altars to earn money to keep traveling. James had a deep faith. For the past several years he was very involved at St. Mary of Perpetual Help Church and The Monastery of the Holy Cross in Chicago.James was an active Oblate of the Monastery, living the spirituality of the Benedictine monks as a layperson. He was a prayerful, quiet man. We have truly lost a gentle giant. James is preceded in death by his parents, Charles and Mary Jane and the following siblings; Bridget Rau, Paul, Peter and Timothy. Services have been held in Chicago. Memorial gifts for James may be sent to St. Mary of Perpetual Help Church Preservation Fund; 1039 West 32nd St.;Chicago, IL 60608 (773) 927-6646 or Monastery of the Holy Cross; 3111 South Aberdeen St.; Chicago, IL 60608 (773)927-7424 ext 206.