Jim Ashton

“I attended college at Drake University where I met my wife Peggy. Graduated in January of ’68 and went to work at KCOG Radio, Centerville, IA, as an announcer, DJ and was the sports broadcaster for the local high school and junior college football teams. I had worked at 3 different radio stations while in college including WHO-Radio in Des Moines. On Friday, September 13, 1968, I received a draft notice! By Thanksgiving of that year I was in the Navy. I spent 4 years in the service as a Dental Technician at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot, San Diego, served aboard the USS Iwo Jima, USS Dubuque and as a Marine combat corpsman in Viet Nam with a helicopter combat squadron. I was discharged in November of ’72 and returned to St. Louis where I began a career in healthcare and hospitals. In’79 we returned to California, lived in Thousand Oaks and worked for a large company, AMI, a for-profit hospital chain based in Beverly Hills (a long way and a very different culture from Zion). Our daughter Jenny was born while I was in the service in San Diego, our son Jeff was born in St. Louis ’84 and Doug was born in California. We returned to St. Louis in ’84 and have been there since. I am currently Director-Business Development for MileStone Healthcare, Dallas, TX, and travel extensively in the Midwest and other parts of the US when necessary. When I’m not traveling, I work out of a home-based office. I am in sales working with hospitals to establish Acute Inpatient Rehabilitation units for patients who have had severe strokes, ma-jor surgeries, joint replacements, heart attacks, brain and spinal injuries and other diagnoses that cause a person to become physically decondition-ed. Our patients average age is 72 so, hopefully, I don’t expect to see any of my classmates in this program in the near future. When we became “empty nesters”, Peggy began her career first as an outplacement consultant and now works at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, as a professional fund raiser for the school. On January 1, 2001, our son Doug and his wife Sarah gave us our first and only grandchild, Issac. We spoil him just as much as we can and then send him home with his parents as they live in Springfield, MO. Jenny and Jeff both live in St. Louis, both single but we are searching for a husband for Jenny. Jeff is playing the field. As I look back on my life I’m thankful for the success we have experienced, for a strong, loving, healthy and wonderful family, for a wife who has been supportive, for close friends and for the life God has allowed me to experience. As my parents, Dan and Helen, now 91 and soon to be 88 respectively, still live semi-independently, would ad-vise anyone today…..work hard, love much, laugh a lot, and smile. Hats off to the class of ’63 and may we remember our classmates who cannot be with us to celebrate another milestone in our lives.”