James Earl Briggs, 65, Dalton

September 26, 2018

James Earl Briggs, 65, of Dalton, passed away Sunday, Sept. 16, 2018, at his home, surrounded by his loving family and close friends following a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer.

Jim was born Dec. 11, 1952, in Madison, to Ervin Wesley and Gwendolyn Jean (Tisdale) Briggs Sr.

Jim served in the U.S. Army from 1972-1978 during the Vietnam War, stationed in Hawaii, then in Vietnam with the search and rescue mission. He married Laurie Marie Schmidt, daughter of Jerry and Betty Schmidt of Dalton, on May 23, 2006, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Jim’s manual skills were limitless. The talent he possessed with his hands was evident in the quality of every project completed. He could build a house or a vehicle, no project was too big or too small. Most days you could find him working in his shop as a carpenter, creating furniture or gifts for loved ones. He enjoyed cutting and welding steel, fixing or restoring vehicles or even possibly swapping out a motor. Jim was never short on words, teaching all he knew to others. Jim looked forward to attending the annual car shows and swap meets in Jefferson and Iola.

Jim was proceeded in death by his parents; brother, Gerry Briggs; brothers-in-law, Fred Werla and Michael Schmidt; nephew, Fred Werla Jr.; and grandson, Tyler Furman.

Jim is survived by his wife, Laurie Briggs of Dalton; his children, Heather (Phillip) Due of Portage, Marcus (Julie) Briggs of Portage, Kim Meyers of Pardeeville, Lisa (Robert) Hering of Pardeeville; his grandchildren, Morgan and Trent Briggs, Kailee and Janessa Meyers, and Clint Hering; sisters, Vicki Werla of Grand Prairie, Texas, Loha (Terry) Kuhn of Portage, Holly (Boyd) Wolfgram of Pardeeville and Kristi (Glenn) Schmitz of Westfield; brothers, Ervin Jr. of Montello, Marty (Kim) Briggs of Pardeeville; sister-in-law, Sharon (Dale) Rainey of Montello; many nieces and nephews; and other near relatives and friends; Butch Rehak and Gordy Benson.

Friends and family may join us for the celebration of Jim’s life from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 6, at Northwoods Inc. of Wisconsin in Portage. A blessing of Jim’s life will begin at 2 p.m followed by military honors which will be provided by Portage Veterans Honor Guard. Afterward, family and friends will be encouraged to share memories. In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to an organization of the donor’s choice. The family would like to thank Dr. Rory Makielski and his staff from SSM Health of Beaver Dam.

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