06/23/1934 - 07/07/2019
James Ontiveros, our beloved husband, father, grandfather and friend passed away peacefully Sunday, July 7, 2019 at his home in Sandy, Utah.
He was born on June 23, 1934 in Salt Lake City, Utah to loving parents Julian Ontiveros and Marcelina Ogas Ontiveros being the last child of their thirteen children. He was raised in Midvale, Utah where he enjoyed sports, family, friends, customized cars and movies at the local theater.
He graduated from Jordan High School (JHS) and was a proud JHS “Beetdigger” and represented Beetdigger pride as he excelled in academics and sports, tennis being his passion. He served in the army during the Korean war and had a deep love of this country. He then went on to attend Brigham Young University and was equally proud to be a BYU “Cougar” as a student athlete on the BYU tennis team. During this time James met the love of his life Glenda Hardcastle whom he affectionately called Luv Luv and wrote daily love letters to her. They married September 10, 1959 and were later sealed in the Salt Lake LDS Temple on January 3, 1975. From this union were born to them two children.
His career took their family to Idaho in 1968 while he worked at Argonne National Laboratory in Idaho Falls and then at AMI in Pocatello. Returning back to Utah in 1975 where he worked and eventually retired from L3 Communications. Just prior to his retirement he became ill and received the gift of life in the form of a liver transplant. As a lifelong athlete, and with the loving support and meticulous care by his wife Glenda, he was able to have 27 bonus years added to his life and honored the donor family by continuing his excellent health and active lifestyle as he went on to compete in the US Transplant Games earning numerous gold medals in tennis across the country, competing in the World Senior Games as well as local tennis tournaments competing until the age of 80 when he hung up his rackets due to a leg injury sustained while playing in a tournament. He has been an advocate of organ transplantation and alongside his wife hosted fundraisers, spoke to groups and individuals about transplantation and was a wonderful example of living fully.
Tennis was a thread running through the fabric of his life, he taught many children over the years beginning as a teenager while in Midvale and delighted in seeing their progress. He went on to be instrumental in building from the ground up the youth tennis program in Idaho Falls and upon moving back to Utah taught lessons to many young people. After retirement he coached at Murray High School for a time.
He was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and served in many capacities. His favorite being teaching Primary to the children with his wife Glenda with whom many still speak fondly of those times and decades later still keep in close contact. He also spent many years serving in the Jordan River temple and with his wife and enjoyed visiting various temples as they traveled.
James always had a love of beautiful cars and was a founding member of one of the first car clubs in the early 1950’s in Salt Lake City called “The Saints”. His cars were immaculate, and he took great pride in all of them and found it satisfying to polish them until they gleamed.
His desire to stay active after his retirement combined with his love of movies dating back to his early childhood led him to the natural fit of working at Jordan Commons Megaplex. He was one of the groups of original employees when the megaplex opened and loved the people he worked with and the patrons that came in. He was much loved by his coworkers and played a role in helping many teenagers get their first job. He loved the benefits of being able to see all of the movies and take his grandchildren to the movies often. He worked nearly 20 years there with an unplanned retirement in June 2019 due to his rapid health decline.
His crowning achievement would be his genuine love of his family and his friends. He had a natural ability to make all feel loved, at ease and included. He lit up when around his family and had a wonderful smile. Many people have remarked that he was a classy, generous gentleman. James never lacked for energy in his life, 85 years of perpetual motion, the epitome of living life to the fullest and getting so much done each and every day. Their children will always remember hearing their parents say as the day came to a close “we got a lot done today” and indeed they did. He will be greatly missed and leaves a legacy of love.
James is survived by his wife Glenda of Sandy, Utah, their son Troy Ontiveros (Robyn) of Salt Lake City, Utah, daughter Staci Dansie (John) of Dublin, California, grandson Jensen Dansie, and granddaughters Sarah Ontiveros and Katie Ontiveros.
Preceded in death by parents Julian and Marcelina Ontiveros and twelve siblings.
Funeral services will be held on Friday, July 12, 2019 beginning at noon at the Mt. Jordan 6th Ward, 9331 South 300 East in Sandy. A viewing will be held Thursday, July 11, 2019 from 6-8pm at Larkin Sunset Gardens Mortuary, 1950 E. Dimple Dell Road (10600 South) in Sandy, as well as Friday prior to services beginning at 11:00. Interment to follow at Larkin Sunset Gardens.