James "Skip" Edward Hayes died on November 22, 2017 at McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden, Utah. He was 82 years old.
He was born September 10, 1935 in Evanston to Theodore "Ted" and Genevieve Hayes. Thanks to his beloved big brother Robert, he grew up hunting and fishing and loved the outdoors.
As a child Skip suffered from severe dyslexia, an unknown condition at the time. He was labeled "slow" and had to repeat both first and second grades. He grew up thinking he wasn't very intelligent and he struggled all through his school years. It wasn't until decades later--when his 11-year old son taught him to play chess and he started winning every match--that he realized he might not really be slow after all. He was, in fact, very bright.
Skip loved sports. He played football and basketball in high school and enjoyed shooting, archery and bowling, but in his 30s he found his true love: golf.
Yet golf wasn't his only obsession. Skip loved everything automobile. He owned many different cars and trucks during his lifetime, from a '64 Mustang to a 2012 Kia Soul (complete with "Skip's Muscle Car" bumper sticker). He also had a thing for one-armed bandits and, being the high roller that he was, enjoyed playing the penny and nickel slots in Wendover. He had an uncanny ability to usually break even or walk away with more money than he started with, which often amounted to thousands. Of pennies.
Skip had two sons: Todd, with former wife Peggy (Roberts), and Lance, with former wife JoAnn (Bruce). Being a big kid at heart himself, he loved to take his kids to the circus and Utah State Fair, and take day trips through the Uinta’s, past Mirror Lake ending with dinner at Spring Chicken Inn in Wanship. During Todd's early years you'd often find the two of them headed to see the latest Disney movie at the Strand. It was during one of these movie nights that he met JoAnn, who happened to be running the ticket booth. And when Lance came along, the two of them enjoyed four-wheeling together, WWF wrestling, monster truck shows, and digging snow forts under Evanston's famous snow drifts.
He worked for 22 years at General Chemical near Green River, Wyoming. Shortly after retirement he became re-acquainted with an old girlfriend, Marilyn Dean, whom he'd dated more than 40 years prior. In 2004 they married and moved to Roy, Utah. Marilyn loved to travel, so they cruised their way to Alaska, Russia, Scandinavia, Panama Canal, and Hawaii.
He is survived by sons Todd and Lance, former wife JoAnn Hayes, grandson Dallas Denton, and cherished friends Si Hernandez and Althea Labrum. He was preceded in death by wife Marilyn, parents Ted and Gen, brother Robert Norton and sister-in-law Diana Martin.
Funeral service is at Crandall Funeral Home on Wednesday November 29 at 12 PM. Visitation will take place one hour prior from 11 AM. Interment will be at Evanston City Cemetery.