In Loving Memory
James F. Maxfield
December 25, 1936 – March 13, 2013

Walla Walla - James F. “Jim” Maxfield, 76, died March 13, 2013, at Washington Odd Fellows Home.
He was born December 25, 1936, in Omaha, Nebraska, to James P. and Helen Anderson Maxfield. His father died in 1950 when Jim was just a child. In 1955, he graduated from Omaha Central High School.
On August 23, 1958, he and Kay Lewis were married. He graduated magna cum laude, from Knox College, Galesburg, Illinois in 1959, and received a PhD from the University of Iowa in 1967. After finishing his graduate class work and returning to Knox College to teach for two years, he and his family moved to Walla Walla in 1966, where he taught English literature and creative writing and started the film teaching program at Whitman College. He retired from teaching on 1997, when the symptoms of his multiple sclerosis, diagnosed in 1977, exacerbated.
A lifetime love of literature, music, particularly jazz, and film was shared with and passed down to his three children, wife and sister. During his teaching career of more than 35 years, he published many articles on literature and film in academic journals, as well as a book, “The Fatal Woman: Sources of Male Anxiety in American Film Noir, 1941-1991.”
He is survived by his wife, Kay, of 54 years; sons, James Sherwin, Dayton, Washington; and Thomas Christopher, Edmonds, Washington; and daughter and son-in-law, Karen and Nicholas Starin, and granddaughters, Sabina and Veejaya Starin, all of Portland, Oregon; and sister, Anne Wilkinson, Sarasota, Florida. His parents and sister, Sarah, preceded him in death.
At his request, there will be no service. Memorial contributions may be made to The Rising Sun Clubhouse through Mountain View-Colonial DeWitt, 1551 Dalles Military Road, Walla Walla, WA 99362.
Friends may write memories and sign the online guestbook at


Born: December 25, 1936
Death: March 13, 2013
Place of Death: Washington Odd Fellows Home
Occupation: Professor of English literature and creative writing


Kay L. Maxfield, Spouse
James Sherwin, Son
Thomas Christopher, Son
Karen (Nicholas) Starin, Daughter
Granddaughters: Sabina and Veejaha Starin Anne Wilkinson, Sister

Preceded in Death By

James P. and Helen Anderson Maxfield, Parents
Sarah, Sister


There will be no service.

Click for Map and Directions


Memorial donations may be made to:
The Rising Sun Clubhouse through Mountain View-Colonial DeWitt, 1551 Dalles Military Road, Walla Walla, WA 99362