James Newell Sorensen

James Newell Sorensen

Nov. 9, 1941 – Sept. 29, 2021

James Newell Sorensen, 79, of Hermosa, South Dakota, passed away on September 29, 2021, in Rapid City. His family was making plans to celebrate his 80th birthday in November when he passed away.

Newell was born in Lovell to Norman Aaron Sorensen and Lucinda Wasden on November 9, 1941. He was the firstborn and had two sisters and two brothers, Gail (Richard) Hamilton, Julian (Patsy), Mark (Marie) and Charlette.

He attended school in Lovell, then at the University of Wyoming. He graduated with his master’s degree in 1966. He married Josephine “Jo” Jones on December 13, 1963, in the Logan, Utah, Temple. In December, they would have celebrated their 58th anniversary. Together they had a large family — nine children, 42 grandchildren and 12 great-grandchildren. 

Newell is survived by his wife; children Bret (Lorraine), Janell (Clark) Wiberg, Norman (Terri), Bryant (Marie), Marla (Eric) Cheney, Austin (Amy), Andrew (Julie), Sarah (Brian) Harwood and Seth (Charlotta); as well as grandchildren, siblings and extended family members. 

He worked as the Big Horn County planning director as well as other city and county government positions most of his career and lived in several states. He retired in 2004 when he and Jo retired to the Black Hills to be close to their son, Norman, who lives there.

He was an active member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Serving in the presidency of the Bismarck, North Dakota, Temple along with Jo was a joy to him. He had to always be doing some project. After he got ill with cancer, it was hard on him to not be able to work as he had in the past.

All who knew him will miss him greatly. Until we meet again.