Back to: News
March 28, 2012
Follow News

James H. (Jim) Driver

Jim Driver, 78, of Eagle and formerly of Columbia, MO, passed away March 19 at South Hampton Place in Columbia after a brief illness. An avid Broncos fan, he abhorred Manning and evidently wanted out before a deal was done.

Driver was born June 20, 1933 in Humboldt, TN to Marshall Wm. and Ida Frances Hill Driver. He graduated from Central High School in Helena, AR in 1951, and enlisted in the Navy, serving as a staff photographer during the Korean War. Upon his return to the states, Jim enrolled at Santa Clara Community College in Sunnyvale, CA. However, deciding that the curriculum was too liberal, Jim transferred to the University of Missouri, where he earned a degree in Anthropology.

After marrying Margaret Odle of St. Louis in 1959, Jim rejoined the Navy as a Naval Flight Officer (aviation navigator), based at the Naval Air Station in Pensacola, FL and later at Moffett Field in CA. In 1964 the Drivers settled in Columbia, MO, where Jim joined the Naval Reserves and went to work for Rodney Smith Tree Service. He later opened a Pizza Inn franchise in downtown Columbia. Jim also owned and operated Aerial Services, LTD, an aerial photography and banner-towing business, during the 1970's.

After retiring from the Naval Reserves with a rank of Lt. Commander, Jim moved to Colorado and worked as an Air Traffic Control Specialist in Denver and then finally in his beloved Eagle. In Colorado, Driver eagerly took up skiing and skating; in his spare time he enjoyed teaching children to ice skate. He also loved camping and stargazing in the beautiful Rockies with his Mensa friends, and participating in archaeological digs in Utah. Jim especially loved helping out with the shelter dogs and cats at the Humane Society in Eagle.

Jim is survived by his brother Marshall Driver of Little Rock, AR; his daughter Kathy Jacobson of Lexington, KY; his daughter Rosie Gerding and her husband Bob of Columbia, MO; and his grandchildren Ben Jacobson of Atlanta, GA and Maggy Rhein of Madison, WI. He was preceded in death by his parents and two brothers.

A memorial service is planned for late May at Jim's favorite place on Earth, the "Big Rock" at Sylvan Lake's Yeoman Park in Eagle. In lieu of flowers, contributions are suggested to the Eagle Valley Humane Society ( or the Eagle Valley Public Library (

Stories you may be interested in

The VailDaily Updated Mar 28, 2012 01:05PM Published Mar 28, 2012 01:04PM Copyright 2012 The VailDaily. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.