James A. Lang

October 10, 1954 to July 20, 2018

On July 20, 2018, James A. Lang peacefully passed away surrounded by family and friends. James was born in Anchorage, Alaska and spent his younger years in Metlakatla, on Annette Island. The family moved to various places such as Salem, Oregon and Riverton, Wyoming where he graduated from Riverton High School in 1972. In the same year, his family moved to Yakima, Washington.

Jim bravely battled Neuroendocrine Pancreatic Cancer and the resulting cancer issues for a decade. The Cancer was related to an inherited syndrome called Familial Multiple Endocrine Neoplasia Type 1 (MEN1). It was important to him that people know that those with cancer in their families should get tested early and often for markers. He also has requested that those who knew him understand that he has no regrets. At the time of his passing, he was happy he lived as long as he did and was at peace.

He was grateful for the opportunities that presented themselves in his lifetime and the adventures associated with those events. He enjoyed his time with Up With People, and maintained many life-long friendships from that period.

Jim spent time as a Reserve Police Officer in Yakima, which created a life-long respect for the profession. His biggest source of pride was his time in the Navy, serving on both the Nimitz and Kitty Hawk aircraft carriers in the early 1990’s, and flying S3 Viking surveillance planes, as a Navigator.

Recently he retired from SPAWAR where he had spent many years on projects he enjoyed, working with many people he greatly appreciated and respected. Through this, he was able to travel the world and form some of his closest friendships.

Jim was proud of his children, Justin and Diana. He also took happiness from his ‘adopted’ kids, Chase (Allie) and Matt (Brigitte), and was honored by the fact that he was a father figure to his nephews, Nate (Christy) and Christopher (Natalie).

His daughter, Diana has so many favorite memories spending time with her dad. One that she treasures most was when he took her to San Diego Comic-Con the first time at age 13. He stood around and people-watched while she explored. She is the most thankful for that, as it opened a whole new world to her.

His son Justin’s best memories would be the small things – like spending time together building rockets or pinewood derby cars when he was younger. As he grew older, his fondest memories came from having his dad help him with his car and being able to share travel and concert experiences.  These great memories helped as times became rougher for his dad during the last few years of his illness.

He was pre-deceased by his Mother and Father, Wanda and Jack Lang; his brothers John and Joe, and his Father-in-Law, Henry H. Hunter, and Brother-in-Law Frank Minear.

He is survived by his wife of 34 years, Rene’ Lang, his children Justin Lang and his girlfriend Kimberly Abad, and Diana Lang and her boyfriend Kyle Blankenfeld.  Jim is also survived by his siblings, Leslie Lang, Bernadette Lindbergh, Mary Walker, Amy Stuckey, Judy Ratcliff, Howard Hunter, Dana Murray, Lori Minear, Jon Hunter, Ron Hunter, their respective significant others and his nieces and nephews.

The family is grateful for the excellent care provided by the Doctors, Nurses, and Staff at the Sharp Grossmont Hospital and the careful management of his health by the Neuroendocrine Staff at Cedars-Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles.  The level of care and encouragement provided by Dr. Hendafar and his team was unparalleled and is one reason Jim was able to fight for as long as he did, which was far above and beyond anyone’s expectation.

The family would love for you to share how you met James and your favorite stories and memories.

A Celebration of Life will be held on October 13, 2018 at 9329 starting at noon.  For more information contact Rene @ rehlang4@gmail.com

In lieu of flowers we kindly ask that you make a donation to the Neuroendocrine Tumor Research Foundation (http://netrf.org/donate).


Rene and family, We’ve just returned home and have heard the news of Jim. I’m so sorry. It has been such a shock. Jim was a very special person that one was proud to call a friend. We were just speaking of the both of you a couple of months ago. Please let Steve and I know if we can help with anything. Rene my heart goes out to all of your family. If you get this way please let me know. My cell number is (509) 952-7448.

Betty & Steve Morkert on November 08, 2018

Rene', I just found out of Jim's passing. I am so sorry, his loss is deeply felt by all. I always considered him a great friend and am sorry I had lost touch with him over that last several year but I couldn't find him on FaceBook or by doing a internet search. I have many fond memories of our time together during our early Navy Days. My thoughts are with you and your family. Warmest Regards, Steve Richard

Steve Richard on October 18, 2018

Rene, you probably don't remember me. I was a reserve police officer with Jim from 1980 to 1982 approximately. We spent many hours going over the cases we were involved in. He was always there to give me pep talks and moral support. I think about him all the time. He was my best friend. I miss him terribly.

Cathy Robbins (Bridges) on September 27, 2018

Hey everyone, I know this is a little bit late, but I was thinking about you all and thought it be good to send. I met Jim in preparation for a project at SPAWAR transitioning to Germany. He was already out here and was looking for a replacement. I interviewed with the team and was selected to be the person that helped him get home from his TDY that was supposed to be short term, but turned out to be a much longer effort...haha. I flew out here to Stuttgart, Germany and met Jim here in Stuttgart for the first time. What a great guy, he was definitely mission focued and I learned a lot from him. We hit the ground running. He talked non-stop about his family and was really proud of his daughter and spoke highly of everyone.....but I recall him talking about Diana the most. He seemed to really stress the importance of empowering women when he talked about his daughter and you can tell that he loved his family dearly. I spent a lot of time confiding in Jim and was trying to get him back out here for one last work trip. It didn't work out, but would have loved to have been able to do so. He wanted to turn it into a vacation with Rene on the tail end of the work trip. We definitely miss Jim and still talk about him here in the office. He was a great guy and an easy guy to talk to. I miss him a lot. Just wanted to let you know, and I'm very sorry for your loss. Alex Ferguson

Alex Ferguson on September 24, 2018

I am so sorry to hear about Jim... My love, support, sympathies, and prayers are with each of you during this time. blessings and peace Barb

Barbara Boone on September 09, 2018

I had the pleasure of working with Jim for almost a decade. His positive and outgoing presence is already being missed by all of us who knew him. Jim's dedication to his family and friends is a source of inspiration for all of us. - Mike

Mike Taylor on August 04, 2018

Rene', Justin and Diana, There are not enough words to express how I feel. It was such a privilege to have Jim in our family. There are so many memories thru the years that it is difficult to pinpoint one so I will go with the last time I saw him. It was after Nate and Christies's wedding and he was taking Laverne and me to visit Margaret. We got to share so much together as we rode along. He was upbeat and had that great sense of humor that was with him as long as I knew him. I know he made all of you happy as well as our whole family. I will never forget him. Praying for peace, comfort and the love that only God can give at this time. I love you all and am with you in spirit.

Pat Hunter on August 04, 2018

Rene', Justin and Diana, I send you all my heartfelt sympathy at your great loss. Jim was certainly one of those special people you sometimes encounter in your life. I traveled with Jim in Up with People in 1973 and I have many fond memories of bus rides and playing guitar together on park benches, auditoriums or wherever the moments had us. He was a fine man and will be missed by so many. Prayers for your healing.

Willie Knowles on August 03, 2018

Dear Rene, Justin and Diana, it is so much fun to see Jim “being Jim” and living large in all these beautiful family photos! He was SO VERY proud of you all and so grateful to share his life with you all! You have written a loving tribute to a man who gave so much of himself to his family, friends and through his military service he loved so much! He left a true legacy! We will miss Jim and he will never be forgotten! Much love to you all as you move forward with your cherished memories.

Patty Johnson on August 03, 2018