Franklin James (Jim) Breen


Franklin James (Jim) Breen was born March 6, 1947 in Sheridan, WY, the son of John E (Jack) Breen and Mary Ann Breen Astrope.  He attended grade school in Billings then moved to Bridger, MT. He graduated from Bridger High School in 1967 as president of his class and also student body president. He attended Northern Montana College for two years before joining the Marine Corp Reserve. Jim worked for 33 years in railway maintenance in MT, WA and WY. In 2002 he retired after 14 years as road master for BNSF and moved to Baker City, OR in 2006.

Jim shared his smile and great sense of humor readily, with a natural ability to remember and interact with people. Talented musically, he played the guitar and could often be heard singing or humming, especially country songs.  He enjoyed fishing, hunting and camping throughout his life, but his first recreational love was golf, and he spent countless hours on various courses where he developed many valued friendships. Golf buddies often commented on his admirable “swing!”

Jim’s first love and priority was always his family. High school sweethearts, he married Penny Steffan on July 25, 1970 and they were blessed with three children, Jami, Jennifer and Jay. He dearly loved his eight grandchildren and was proud to have one great-granddaughter. Jim was diagnosed with malignant melanoma in March of 2013 and remained hopeful throughout the following months as he fought a valiant battle against the cancer. After sharing last good-byes with his family and reassuring them of eternal life, Jim departed this life in the serene surroundings of Evergreen Hospice Care Center in Kirkland, WA.

Jim is survived by his wife, Penny, daughters Jami (Eric) Wollan of Mount Lake Terrace, WA, and Jennifer Luchi, Baker City, OR and son, Jay (Naomi) Breen, Sandy, OR.; grandchildren Michael and Macy Wollan, Alexus and Adrianna Luchi, Jahlee Troyer, Penelope, Mia and Cole Breen, and great-granddaughter Carley Sheldon. He is also survived by sisters Judi (Gary) Taylor of Wheatland, WY, Shirley Miller, Fromberg, MT, Bonnie Scarbro, Great Falls, and brother, Chris Johnson, Missoula. Jim was loved by numerous sisters-in-law, brothers-in-law, nieces and nephews as well. He was preceded in death by his parents and sister Micki Sticka.

A celebration of life will be held on Sunday, August 25, at Quail Ridge Golf Course in Baker City at 4:00 p.m. His life will also be honored on Friday, August 30, at the Methodist Church in Bridger, MT at 11:00 a.m. followed by a reception at the Bridger Senior Center.

In lieu of flowers memorials may be made to a Hospice service or charity of one’s choice.




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