Dec. 26, 1932-Jan. 10, 2024

James LaVar Wade, 91, passed away Jan. 10, 2024, in St. George, Utah, at home with his family by his side. He was born Dec. 26, 1932, in Cedar City, Utah, to James Leigh Wade and Dora Robinson. He married Kaye Seegmiller on Sept. 8, 1953, in Las Vegas, Nevada. They were later sealed in the St. George Temple.

In his younger years, Dad spent a lot of time in Paragonah at his grandparents’ house playing with his cousins.  They especially loved playing in the barn. He built lifelong friendships with many cousins. Some of his summers were spent living in a sheep wagon while his dad and Uncle worked on Cedar Mountain. One of his cousins said that when you live in a sheep wagon, you have to make your own fun, and with LaVar it was always fun.

Dad attended schools in Cedar City and graduated from Cedar High School. During summers he herded sheep for his Uncle Revere, Clarks and others. He spent a lot of time on Cedar Mountain and in Southern Nevada. It was always fun to travel with him because he could tell stories about his sheep herding days and he knew who owned the land you traveled through. Even though he ended up working with cattle, he was a sheepherder at heart and always loved some good, old, mutton.

Shortly after Dad and Mom married, he served his country in the Korean War. His oldest son was born while he was gone. Upon returning he worked in heavy construction and always told us about all the roads he had helped build on Cedar Mountain and other places. The family traveled around to many different construction jobs in Utah and Nevada before moving to Las Vegas and staying for 26 years. After he retired, they moved to St. George, Utah, and continued ranching in Barclay, Nevada, and on the Tule Desert. They also traveled many miles following their kids, grandkids, and even great-grandkids, to many rodeos and sporting events. They especially loved going to the horse races in Ely and Phoenix with Mom’s sister Jaine and Bob and many other friends.

Dad loved people, he knew people everywhere you went and loved talking to them. He was a friend to everyone he met. He had a special relationship with his sister Margaret and was always so good to her.

Dad is survived by his children Gary LaVar (Roxie), Alamo, Nevada; Scott S. (Jolynn), Corvallis, Oregon; Connie Bundy, St. George, Utah; Sheila Kaye (Derek) Southwick, St. George, Utah; daughter-in-law, Dawn Wade, Hiko, Nevada; brothers, Kenneth R. (Donna) Wade, Cedar City, Utah; Shirl R. (Sherrie) Wade, Cedar City, Utah; sister, Margaret (Jack) Miller, Cedar City, Utah; 18 grandchildren, 42 great-grandchildren with one on the way, and four great-great-grandchildren with one on the way.

He was preceded in death by his sweet wife Kaye Seegmiller, whom he has missed desperately for the past six months; son Kelly Steven Wade; grandson Walter Lane Burgess; great-granddaughter Allison Anne Wade; son-in-law Eddie Marion Bundy and sisters-in-law Corman Adams and Karen Blatten.

Funeral services will be Thursday, Jan. 18, at 11 a.m. at the St James Chapel, 1095 St. James Lane, St. George, Utah. 

Visitation will be Wednesday, Jan.  17, from 5-7 p.m., at Spilsbury Mortuary, 110 South Bluff St., St. George, Utah, and Thursday prior to services from 9:30-10:30 a.m., at the St. James Chapel. 

The internment will take place in the Wade Family Cemetery at Barclay, Nevada.

The family would like to express their deepest appreciation to Applegate Home Care and Hospice for the wonderful care they gave our dad.

For those unable to attend, click here to watch services remotely:

Arrangements are under the direction of Spilsbury Mortuary, 110 S Bluff St., St. George, 435-673-2454. Family and friends are invited to sign LaVar’s online guest book.