James Edward Laughbaum, age 52, passed away early Saturday morning, December 8, 2012, at Marquette General Hospital where he had been hospitalized since suffering from a stroke at his home on November 25th.
Jim was the first child of Arthur H. and Helen (Sohlberg) Laughbaum. He was born on August 6, 1960, in Escanaba, grew up in Gladstone, and for the past twelve years, resided in Brampton with his wife, Barbara (Heimerl) Laughbaum.
Jim, an Eagle Scout, graduated from Gladstone High School in 1978. He was an avid musician, playing trumpet in jazz, pep and marching bands and also serving as drum major at GHS. Jim attended Northern Michigan University for two years before transferring to the University of Michigan, in Ann Arbor, where he earned a bachelor degree in history.
A lover of nature and the outdoors, Jim returned to the U.P., after college, eventually building a home in the woods in Brampton. Jim possessed innumerable talents and interests including music, boating, kayaking, camping, landscaping, carpentry, traveling, cooking, baking and socializing. He was a huge U of M fan and sports enthusiast who enjoyed spending time at the Gladstone Yacht Club and for over twenty years faithfully served as church organist, beautifully playing organ and piano for countless church services, weddings, funerals and special events. Jim was the Manager of Tunnel Vision in Escanaba, a division of the U.P. Rubber Company. He was the pioneer of sewer televising and repair, in the Upper Peninsula, through his work as General Manager of Tunnel Vision.
In addition to his wife, Barb, Jim is survived by his son, David Laughbaum, and daughter Chelsea Heimerl; two sisters, Margie (Chris) Sande of Beverly Hills, MI and Carol (David) Fisher of Bloomfield Hills, MI; seven nieces and nephews and many cousins and friends.
Jim was preceded in death by his father, Arthur in 2002 and mother, Helen in 2010.
Visitation for James Laughbaum will be held on Tuesday, December 11, 2012, from 2:00PM to 6:00PM, at the United Evangelical Church in Gladstone. Funeral services to celebrate the life of James Laughbaum will follow visiting hours, at 6:00PM, at the United Evangelical Church, with Rev. Nathan Langager officiating and Jim