This site is dedicated to the memory of our dear friend, Jim Koplin, to help connect and share our memories of this truly amazing man.
Please use the comment form at the bottom of this page to send a message about Jim Koplin.
December 20, 2012 at 10:16 pm
I never really interacted with Jim that much since most of his time at HOBT was in the wee hours of the morning or in the studio papier macheing, but his presence was always warm and kind when I did see him.
What I’ll always remember is when he had a problem with the computer, or his email, he would type a formal memo, sign it, and put it in my box. That always put a smile on my face.
I am sad to hear of his passing and my hear goes out to his family, friends, and the HOBT & MayDay cafe communities in which his presence was so deeply valued.
December 23, 2012 at 12:40 pm
Jim’s obituary is in the December 23 Star Tribune, online at http://www.legacy.com/obituaries/startribune/obituary.aspx?page=lifestory&pid=161932137#fbLoggedOut
December 23, 2012 at 7:00 pm
I have spent my entire life knowing and loving Jim. He was my Father’s childhood friend who would come to Alexandria 4 times a year. I will miss his fresh loaves of bread from the monks at St. John’s. Every year just after deer hunting season Jim was religiously present. Jim wanted the venison liver’s and Heart’s. We gladly saved them for him. He would offer to pay for the venison processing out of the goodness of his heart, so naturally he got an equal portion and then claim that he got too much. He and my brother Reid were much closer. They did a lot more things together.
December 24, 2012 at 12:10 am
It is incomprehensible to me that we will never have this gentle man visit us again. I became a member of “his family” some 52 years ago when I married into the Courneya family. Jim and Sally gifted us with a set of pillows when we were married. Jim was an unofficial member of the family from some of his earliest years. He was a friend of my husbands brother, and for some reason decided to adopt our family as his. Thru the years we have just taken this for granted. He just “wiggled” his way into our family and our hearts. He has been a part of our family, our children, and our grandchildren’s lives. My daughter, Karin, described his relationship well, when she said, ” I am quietly saying good bye to a dear friend who has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember”. Jim was such an integral part of our family. We didn’t realize how much until we look forward to him not being with us. We took his visits so for granted. He took such an interest in each of our children’s lives. They really looked forward to conversations with him, he totally focused on them and whatever they had to say. He even listened to me and my griping, and seemed to understand what I was feeling. I will so miss this understanding man! I loved to have him visit! I don’t think there will ever be a person who can take his place in our lives.
December 26, 2012 at 12:44 pm
Many memories of Jim come to mind, usually ones involving his hands wrapped carefully in latex gloves and dripping with wheat paste underneath an outrageous Minnie-Pearl style gardening hat.
I remember him telling me once about how he asked for his FBI file and received a thick pile of papers with a black marker inking out nearly all of it.
I thought of him often as Heart of the Beast’s equivalent of the “Scotty” engineer from Star Trek — Sandy would come up with a herculean amount of paper mache work to get done before May Day, and somehow without anyone ever quite seeing him, it would always get done with time to spare, neatly organized and documented in a note taped on the workbench.
What a quiet but strong voice for all of us he was. May he continue to shine in our lives as the snow falls, the flowers bloom, the tree is raised. May he continue to guide us towards what is right in the world.
April 27, 2014 at 6:24 pm
Would you happen to have any falimy photo’s that were taken in Sterling that you would be willing to share? I live in Sterling and am interested in the history. Any photo’s that also include buildings are of interest.I remember your Aunt Francis and Uncle Dugan and Butch, they lived down the road from me when I was growing up.
December 30, 2012 at 8:35 am
Jim entered my life in 2006 when I was a professor at the University of Minnesota. I was dealing with a long list of frustrations over higher education and the many absurdities of professor life. A mutual friend suggested I look Jim up and that I could find him at a co-op in south Minneapolis. I spilled my guts to Jim and he knew exactly what I was talking about. Instant connection. I was immediately drawn to his peacefulness, social values, and intellect. He seemed to have something ingenious to say about anything. When we’d get together to chat, I wanted to talk for hours but there always seemed to be something the both of us had to get to.
When I’d visit Minneapolis, I’d make it a point to stop by the co-op and look for him. “He’s out of town,” or “You just missed him.” Next time. I always looked forward to next time.
Even though our interactions were not numerous, I cherish them. Jim had a huge impact on me, and I think I’m a better person because of him. He was a beautiful human being.
January 16, 2013 at 10:40 am
I didn’t have the fortune of knowing Jim personally, but from reading about him and listening to others speak about him in the neighborhood, I wish I had. Over the years I’ve always found myself drawn to his presence and his smile. I often found myself passing by him in the neighborhood, standing in line at MayDay Cafe, or interacting with him at MayDay Workshop. Each time I felt my spirits lift and a voice inside tell me that I was in the presence of someone really good. Someone really nice, who enjoyed life, people, community and the natural world around him. Thanks, Jim, for helping me feel the warmth of the community and for lifting my spirits and making me feel good, simply, with your presence.
January 21, 2013 at 9:55 pm
Jim was an uncle to me. Like Mom (Cecilia Courneya) and brother, Tom both said…He was a fixture at home. I can never remember a time when Jim was not a part of our family…and Sally too when I was little. Jim brought thoughtful conversation always. He was always interested in what ever we were doing. For me this is just a time of separation. I look forward to the day when we are reunited ….along with the rest of the family. There were 5 Courneya children in our home who looked forward to Jim’s visits. Our oldest brother, Scott died in 1982. It gives me joy to think of a reunion between them!!! ….and I am JEALOUS! Our brother, Reid will miss him and look for him…equal to Dad. They had a special bond. I have some old photos from the days when Dad and Jim were young adults enjoying the Courneya family homes in both Minnesota and Florida. It makes me chuckle to think of Karin’s comment about Jim’s leather head band. It was exciting when we were little, to have them (Jim&Sally) visit. They were the only “Hippies” I knew! Ha! Jim would laugh at that memory! I remember going swimming with them at the beach at Lake Latoka…I was worried about Jim’s leather head band and Sally’s unshaved legs! (-:
January 23, 2013 at 9:13 pm
Ramblings from Jim’s auto mechanic…. While I have done business with many fine people from Powderhorn neighborhood over the years, he really stood out for me. It caught me by surprise by how much I felt when I heard he had died. I will miss the visits with him. He was a man with purpose. He always had patience to listen to me! He had endless amounts of energy. And you would automatically trust this man let me tell you. He was in for car service and startled me with cancer surgery he had to his head. I didn’t hesistate and offered him my cabin to use anytime he’d like. Didn’t think twice. He was always so caring and we had some good laughs. Jim, I and the world miss you.
January 28, 2013 at 12:33 pm
He was great support for all of those around him and more. I appreciate his quiet activism, that modeled quiet counsel, work done in the wee hours, and investment in community in places like May Day and the cafe of the same name. I am grateful for prescient and thoughtful articles mailed, his support of many quixotic causes from Dumpster Duels to the Halloween show. His sense of economy, so sane in a world of pirates. His wealth measured in human well being and rich deep organic topsoil that can produce close to half his weight in carrots. My daughter reaps the benefit of spring, summer and fall raspberries that were a gift and have been re-gifted many times since. May this world grow more Jim’s. This will be hard on many but I am so grateful for his do be do be do.
May 1, 2013 at 1:48 pm
I love people who grow younger as they grow older. Jim was one of those people. I last saw him at Riverside Café a few years ago. He looked beautiful. I dreamt of Jim last night. He was getting ready to die and was surrounded by his wonderful community of friends. Everyone was happy, knowing Jim would be just fine no matter where he ended up. He’s one of those rare souls that can leave and stay at the same time. I wish I could join you at the Memorial Service but will be there in spirit.
May 16, 2013 at 9:06 pm
So wonderful to see your post here! It would be grand to see you this weekend, but we will hold a space for you. Annie
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