Longtime West Seattle businessman Jim Sweeney, who has operated Alki Lumber in The Triangle for more than half a century, has died. (This was reported in the WSB Forums last night, and both the family and the business have now confirmed it.) Our photo is from September 2010, when the Kiwanis Club of West Seattle honored Mr. Sweeney as an “Everyday Hero” for donating materials to a club service project at Westcrest Park. He had told club members that day that, while Seattle had more than 130 lumber yards when he took over Alki Lumber in 1959, only a handful remained by the turn of the millennium. Mr. Sweeney was 73 years old; his memorial service is planned for 2 pm Sunday at Our Lady of Guadalupe. We’re expecting additional information from his family later, and will add it then.
ADDED 3:32 PM: From the Sweeney family:
James Brandon Sweeney, 73, of West Seattle died peacefully with his family by his side on Sunday, February 5, 2012 at Swedish Hospital. The cause of death was cardiac arrest. Jim was born in Seattle on December 30, 1938 and grew up in West Seattle. He graduated from West Seattle High School in 1957. He is survived by his wife of 47 years, Judy, and their two daughters, Lisa (John Guthrie) and Lynn (Matt Pedersen), five grandchildren, his sister Karin (Don Boos) and many loving nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and a long list of friends. Jim owned and operated Alki Lumber for over 50 years. The business was founded by his grandfather in 1921. He was an avid, expert skier and enjoyed traveling the world with Judy by his side. Among his greatest gifts, above all, were his generosity, patience and incredible wisdom that touched many lives.
A vigil will be held at Our Lady of Guadalupe (OLG) Catholic Church, 7000 35th Avenue SW, on Saturday, February 11, at 7 pm, and funeral Mass at OLG on Sunday, February 12 at 2 pm. A reception celebrating Jim’s life and legacy will follow at The Hall at Fauntleroy. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests memorial contributions to West Seattle Pee Wee Baseball or the Medic One Foundation.