James was born in Willmar, Minnesota to parents Trygve and Cora Pederson. He is a Norwegian born on St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 1938. He graduated from Willmar High School in 1956, from Hamline University in St. Paul, in 1960, and the University of Minnesota Medical School in 1964. He served as Captain in the Army from 1965-1967, stationed in St. Louis. His residency and fellowship training in Internal Medicine/Nephrology were done at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center. He continued at OUHSC as Professor of Medicine and Director of the Dialysis Program, and was involved in the early development of kidney dialysis and transplant programs. He was honored by the National Kidney foundation of Oklahoma and others for his early work. He was respected as a caring and skilled physician by his patients and mentoring trainees for the Medical School. Survived by his loving wife of 59 years, Suzanne; sons, Eric of Wichita, KS, Dr. Lee and wife Bernetta, children, Reed, Anna, Price of Charlotte, NC; brothers, Larry and Kathryn, Richard and Shirley of Minnesota; 5 nieces and nephews. Memorial contributions may be made to Boy Scout Troup of Chapel Hill UMC or a medical charity. Memorial Gathering will be Saturday, July 18 from 2-4pm at Smith and Kernke Funeral Home.