James E. Wager

James E. “Jim” Wager


Jim Wager was born on September 10, 1930 in Seattle, Washington, the only child of Marjorie Masterson Wager and James Marion Wager.As a young boy in Ballard he enjoyed watching his grandfather, Howard Masterson’s construction projects and the ships unload at the Ballard Harbor. At sixteen-years-old, Jim “ran away to sea” on a merchant ship carrying cargo from Seattle to Japan. This began his lifelong love affair with the sea. After graduating from Ballard High School in 1948, Jim entered the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy in at King’s Point, NY from which he graduated in 1952. During the Korean War he served as a Lieutenant aboard the U.S.S. Walke in Destroyer Division 132. After an honorable discharge from the U. S. Navy in 1955, Jim returned to Seattle to raise a family and begin his business career with American Mail Line LTD (AML). He also remained active in the U.S. Navy Reserve.At AML, Jim held various operational management positions over twenty years. In 1975, when he left AML, he was President of the APL-Everett Agencies and a Vice President of American President Lines, Ltd. Jim was an early advocate of using emerging computer technology to automate, standardize and increase the efficiency of critical shipping processes, such as cargo loading. While at AML, Jim studied at Harvard Business School, graduating from the Program for Management Development. Jim also traveled extensively on business making many friends around the world. In 1976, Jim’s career shifted to the Bay Area where he focused on the developing field of applied information technology. He worked with leading Silicon Valley companies, such as Tymshare and Varian Associates, until his retirement. During this time, he had the opportunity to visit with family, explore the geology of Northern California, and, at the age of 60, be-come a licensed airplane pilot. After retiring, Jim and his wife, Linda moved to a house they built in North Bend at the base of Mt. Si on the Middle Fork of the Snoqualmie River. The house was built on property that had great significance to Jim, as it was originally purchased by his father and was where Jim had enjoyed camping and fishing in his youth and young adulthood. In retirement, he and his wife took great pleasure in traveling, camping, visiting with family, gardening, panning for gold, and working side-by-side with his grandchildren in his vegetable garden and clearing trees from his property. For many years, Jim helped his grand-children and their friends sell “Woof Cookies” at Husky home football games to support the kid’s Children’s Hospital Junior Guild. Jim has been a strong supporter of veteran’s organizations and the USO.On Monday, June 1, 2009, Jim peacefully passed away after a brief bout with cancer. Jim is survived by his wife of sixteen years, Linda of North Bend, his daughter, Margit Moore of Kirkland and son Wayne Wager (Anne) of Seattle; and four grandchildren: Austen (Terezinha)and Bevan(Katelin)Moore, and Emery and Abigail Wager.A memorial service will be held at 10:00 am on Saturday, June 27th at Our Lady of Sorrows Church in Snoqualmie.A memorial web site has been created at: www.sympathytree.com/jameswager1930 In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the following organizations which were important to Jim: The American Cancer Society, USO (United Services Organization) or Mt. Si Helping Hand Food Bank in North Bend.