Cover photo for James Paul Mangan's Obituary

James Paul Mangan

March 23, 1940 — June 7, 2023

James Paul Mangan


James Paul Mangan 


James Paul Mangan, aged 83, died from prostate cancer on June 7, 2023 at his home in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.

Born on March 23, 1940 in San Diego to James and Marjorie Mangan.  James was the first of 9 children.  As a Navy brat, James attended multiple schools while growing up, graduating from Millikan High School in Long Beach, California in 1958.

James was involved with many organizations in High School, including track and field, and was awarded his Eagle Scout Badge. Among other notables, James went on to organize and lead multiple hiking and camping trips through San Gorgonio and San Jacinto, some of the highest peaks in southern California.

James went Long Beach State College then transferred and graduated from Humboldt State College in 1962 with a degree in Forestry, as well as breaking the school record for the mile (4.27) and competing in other track and field events.  During this time James was active with the Marine Corps Platoon Leaders class and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Marine Corps in 1962 upon graduation.

After college, James would join the Marine Corps for four years and serve what would be his first of two tours in Vietnam.  After his four year stint in the Marines was over, Jim returned to California to work as a surveyor in Weaverville, California.  In 1968 James rejoined the Marine Corps.  After surviving his second tour in Vietnam, he would go on to serve for another 20 years, until retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel in 1984. Over his career, James was awarded, The Bronze Star, the Meritorious Service Medal, Navy and Marine Corp Commendation Medal with two gold stars w/Combat “V” device and 4 Navy achievement medals, as well as other multiple service awards.

In 1969, James married what would be the love of his life, Julia, in Norfolk, Virginia. After retiring from the Marines, James took his family on an epic cross-country road trip to find a place to raise his family, finally settling down in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. James would spend a few years in the private sector before he was elected as a Kootenai County Highway Commissioner later serving as the chairman of the Worley Highway District board. He was proud of his lead role in the Worley Highway District, with a successful receipt of a grant to integrate and utilize ARC GIS to create a map to show road right-of-way and facilitates quick data retrieval.

James was an avid reader and always had a book or two on his night stand.   He loved sailing, with two Pacific crossings under his belt, multiple trips through the San Juan Islands and Canada with his wife, and countless hours sailing Lake Coeur d’Alene with his family.   He was a member of the Panhandle Yacht Club where he enjoyed the company of other sailors at gatherings.  While he enjoyed his boat, it also gave him great pleasure to watch his two sons while cleaning the bottom of the hull, always providing clear and concise directions from the dock. James was an avid runner, competing in many marathons and other races. While stationed at Rock Island Arsenal in Davenport, Iowa, James was the President of the Corn Belt Running Club. As well as an accomplished athlete, James was a coach and a mentor to many runners, coaching runners in 29 Palms, California and Davenport, Iowa, implementing new training philosophies that allowed many of his runners to excel at competitions and meets. He enjoyed working on his land, using his chainsaw and tractor. A self-described lumberjack, he could survey a straight line through the trees and brush for many miles. 

He loved to bike ride, completing the Seattle to Portland ride as well as the Coeur d’Fondo.  One of his favorite rides was the Hiawatha Trail, with the beautiful views over the trestles never failing to impress, and always enjoyed the ride back to the top. James was the Choir Director at St. Thomas Catholic Church for many years. He belonged to the Marine Corps League Pappy Boyington Detachment 966, acting as the ceremonial guard leader, Toy’s 4 Tots as well as working for the Marine Corp League Scholarship Foundation.  In 2018 he was awarded the Marine of the Year for his service with the League.  As well as being blessed with a quick wit and dry sense of humor, his leadership skills were exemplary. 

He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Julia, His sons James and David,  granddaughter Jillian and daughter-in-laws Julie and Antoinette, his siblings Michael, Kristine, John, Ellen, David, Kathleen.  He was proceeded in death by his parents, James and Marjorie Mangan, his younger brother Robert and younger sister Theresa.

There will be a 1:00 pm Mass at St. Thomas Catholic Church on 919 E Indiana Ave, CDA, ID 83814, following the mass, Internment & Military Honors will be at the St. Thomas Cemetery at approximately 2:30 pm, 115 S 23rd St, CDA, ID, 83814. A Wake will follow at The Vantage Brewing Company, 208 E Coeur D’Alene Lake Drive (across the street).

In Lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Pappy Boyington Detachment 996, PO Box 1307, Coeur d’Alene, ID 83815 OR North Idaho Veteran Assistance League, PO Box 187, Post Falls ID 83877. (designate for Post Falls Veteran Home.)

The Mangan family would like to thank Beacon Cancer Care and Crest Hospice for their services.

We would also like to thank all of our friends and family who helped in James care and his passing.

“Semper Fi, Marine”

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James Paul Mangan, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Memorial Mass

Friday, July 21, 2023

Starts at 1:00pm (Pacific time)

St. Thomas the Apostle Catholic Church

919 E Indiana Ave, Coeur d'Alene, ID 83814

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.

Graveside Service with Military Honors

Friday, July 21, 2023

Starts at 2:30pm (Pacific time)

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Friday, July 21, 2023

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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