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Community Member Memorial Page

In Memory Of
Jim McFarlane ("320U")

Jim McFarlane standing next to JD tractor
A long time community member and friend Jim McFarlane (known as 320U in the discussion forums) passed away on Tuesday, April 2, 2002 from cancer. He was 66 years old.

The following memorial has been composed by several of his close friends with whom he conversed with on almost a daily basis in the Yesterday's Tractors forums. In their own words...

By The Red, John Fritz - Enthusiasm. That is how I would sum up Jim McFarlane in one word. Sunday evening, Halloween of 1999 I posted on Tales about discovering a JD 4400 combine in the weeds. Monday morning I got a surprised phone call from Jim and we chatted a good hour. Jim was more excited about the find then I was! He asked lots of questions and gave several tips. He insisted on coming down on a weekend to give me a hand. After I bought the combine the following week, Jim and his friend Harold Posthuma met me at the combine to help out one Sunday morning. Jim jumped up on the engine deck like a teenager because he was so fired up about giving me a hand. They helped me get the engine unstuck. Jim gave several tips on cleaning up the fuel system since it sat with old gas for 7 years. Our visit only lasted 2 hours but I felt like I knew him all my life. He was as genuine as his thoughtful and humorous posts on the YTMAG boards. Jim will be greatly missed.

Jim was an avid Deere collector. His collection included JD 320U, JD 430W, JD 435, JD 530, (3) JD 630s, JD 730ES, JD 830PS, JD 620WF, JD LX188 and an IH 615 combine.

By Slo Mo, Jeff Kinney - I don't have the words to express my feelings about the man I know as 320U, Jim McFarlane. Through all of the emails, phone calls, and the visit, he seemed like a man I knew my whole life, and offered up some great advice, along with a lot of good natured ribbing. He is one of those rare individuals who touched the lives of those he met, and the rest of us are better for it. He deeply loved his family, and was very proud of them. His strength and courage throughout his battle with cancer is an inspiration to all of us who knew him.

I recently spent a day with Jim, and it was one of the best days I can remember. We met at a small restaurant in Monterrey, where he and his wife have their businesses. After lunch, we went over to see Lee's antique store. Then the wives went one way while Jim and I drove around to some of his friends, looking at their toys. They had nothing but good things to say about Jim when he wasn't there to say that they were full of beans. After we got back to Jims place, he took me down to his shed to see his toys. He started up all of them to show them off, and told me I had to come up to the local plow day. He was really proud of his John Deere's. He mentioned how much enjoyment and help that he got from Yesterdays Tractors, between the Deere board and the Talers. And the Talers thought a lot of Jim.

God bless you and keep you, my friend.

By F-14, Paul Fox - I got to know Jim through his participation on the YT boards. Much is made of the dangers inherent in trusting people you've only met via the Internet. We've all heard the stories. Talking offline with Red, Slo and others that had the privilege of meeting him face to face, I confirmed my belief that such was not so with Jim. The Jim you saw in your mind's eye when reading his posts was the Jim you met at the local diner for breakfast on Sunday morning. A genuinely nice guy, always upbeat, a good word for everyone, ready to help at the drop of a hat. I can imagine the twinkle in his eye when he was getting ready to pull your leg.

On the one hand, I feel like I missed something by not getting to meet Jim over a cup of coffee. On the other hand, I feel I'm blessed for having had the opportunity to chat with him so many times on the boards. You'll be sadly missed, Jim. I'll think of you often, sitting on that immaculately restored 830, grinning from ear to ear, turning that endless furrow in the sky.

By JRM, John McDermott - One of the greatest pleasures I get from the old iron hobby is meeting fellow tractor enthusiasts. The Internet has opened up a new kind of friendship, one that crosses state lines and often national lines. We are only handles on a computer screen, bantering back and forth, sharing our triumphs and our troubles, and we have become like family. Unfortunately, cyber friends, pass on. I have been on line and on the Yesterdays Tractor Discussion Boards for about 3 years now. One of the first people I met online was 320U. I always enjoyed Jimís friendship, knowledge of tractors, and knowledge of life. He had an easy going, friendly and good natured personality that attracted people. He was always willing to lend a hand, advice, or words of encouragement to others. I had the pleasure of meeting Jim at the Tri-State Show in Portland, IN quite by accident. Neither of us knew the other would be at the show. Meeting Jim in person was like meeting an old friend again. We talked about tractors, work, and families. It was really nice to put a face with the name. Jim was just as I had always pictured him, a true gentleman I had looked forward to seeing him this year, but I guess life doesnít always follow our plans. There will be an empty spot on Tales, but Jim will not be forgotten. Rest in peace Jim.

By Tyler (WA), Tyler Woods - In His wisdom, God has given us tears to both wash away pain and flood our cheeks with joy. Our journey through the years is always a mixture of things we cherish and things we'd just as soon pass up but it's all we know and this life is what we call home. As a parent, I'm experiencing the pain of my children growing up and leaving home to make their own way in the world. My house is growing quiet and becoming less cluttered with toys. I am left with only memories of their laughter at Christmas, their joy at birthdays and the quiet times in Daddy's arms. I know they are doing the right thing in moving on to build their own families but no matter how often we keep in touch, the hollow spot of their absence will never go away. We're saying goodbye to a dear friend today. God has seen fit that his time in this earthly home is now complete and we must say goodbye. We are left with dear memories of a Brother, Husband, Father, Friend, "Tractor Buddy," the hollow spot from his absence and those blessed tears to wash away the pain of his leaving while we celebrate all the good times of his presence. We'll all miss you Jim.

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