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Jim D. Phipps
A chapel service was held Monday at Lakewood Funeral Home for Jim Dale Phipps, 76, of Ceres. He died Aug. 25, 2009 at his home.

Burial was at Lakewood Memorial Park.

Born Sept. 19, 1932, Jim attended Ceres High School where he met his future bride, Carol Marie Romesha. They married on July 27, 1951 and moved to Fremont in 1958, where Jim was in the insurance business. With his wife he developed a very successful real estate business. Jim's health prompted the couple to move to an almond ranch in Hickman in 1970. Mr. Phipps moved back to Ceres in 1973 and then started a Ceres cable TV company, and owned multiple almond ranches.

In 1979, Jim and Carol developed River Oaks Golf Course in Ceres. Both Jim and Carol ran the businesses with family members. Mr. Phipps helped to start the Junior Golf program at River Oaks, ultimately introducing the sport of golf to over 8,000 area youth. He also used the golf course to raise tens of thousands of dollars for Community Hospice and Ceres High School. Carol Phipps died a year ago on August 31, 2008. Mr. Phipps' personal life was punctuated with a series of tragedies. He watched three of his sons pass away. Son William H. Phipps died in an airplane crash in Alaska, Douglas A. Phipps died of cancer, and son Robert L. Phipps, a member of the Ceres City Council, died of a heart attack at age 44 on December 2, 2007.

He leaves behind two children, Michael D. Phipps of Ceres and Janis M. Phipps of Hughson; six grandchildren, Jared Phipps of Cabo San Lucas, Jonathan Carmean and Dustin Phipps, both of Hughson, Kristen Phipps of Hickman, Lindsay Phipps of Riverbank, and Amanda Phipps of San Luis Obispo; and two great-grandchildren.

Remembrances may be sent to Community Hospice Foundation, 4368 Spyres Way, Modesto, CA 95356-9259; or to River Oaks Junior Golf program, 3441 Golf Links Road, Ceres, CA 95307.