Unusual Memorial to a Young Man in the Pines

Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
22,933
This one shows him better.


IMG_2324.jpg
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
12,055
Pines; Bamber area
Edit: Guy just sent me an email that I had received from his father (and subsequently forwarded to all in PBX at the time), explaining why Jim could not come on the PBX trip. In that email was a photo that proves the one in Guy's post definitely is Jim, but younger.

Rest in peace Jim.
 

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Subtlelikeatrex

New Member
Feb 8, 2017
6
Teague, TX
Im am very sorry about your friend. I have searched many things for people and companies (missing people, murders, fugitives, non-custodial parent kidnappings) and did Google searches as a job for a many years.

However, nothing has ever affected me as much as the search for this man has. When I was able to find him and read about him and how much he was loved by so many people, I couldn't help but feel devastated for all people that this man was lost.

I'm just a girl in Texas with extra time on my hands while my infant son naps, but even I appreciate Jim and his contributions to wildlife and society.

I was able to find him because of his love for the NJPB.

I had figured that if he really loved the NJPB, he would likely call it just "pinelands" or "the pines". I searched for "pinelands died 2008". This led me to his obituary.

His family had requested donations to the Pinelands Preservation Alliance in lieu of flowers at his funeral. I then took his name and found the celebration of life party where multiple photos of him in frames were on the tables. I then considered him to be positively identified.

Over 100 donations were made in his name to the preservation fund.

May his memory forever be in the hearts of many.
 

Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
22,933
I found that memorial in the woods in 2009 not realizing it was the same person Bob had met in plant class and we were going to meet on a PBX hike. By the time we had the hike he was obviously not going to come and Bob forwarded the email to me. After looking it over today I read over his research papers which was in the email and I had found one of his study sites in 2011 in Medford. And Scott who was going to be on the PBX hike also found the memorial site at Rockwood. This has been really strange.
 

RednekF350

Piney
Feb 20, 2004
4,551
Pestletown, N.J.
Again, I am sorry about your friend's passing. I am happy that I was able to help. All the best to all of you.

Thank you for your efforts.

You are correct in saying that your discovery of this information was very touching. It really adds a deeper understanding to something that was intriguing to all of us.

Don't be a stranger either.
This site contains a wealth of information about one of the most unique ecosystems in the world. That is what attracted Mr. Rutherford to these woods.
 

Subtlelikeatrex

New Member
Feb 8, 2017
6
Teague, TX
Don't be a stranger either.
This site contains a wealth of information about one of the most unique ecosystems in the world. That is what attracted Mr. Rutherford to these woods.

I ended up donating $150 to the Pinelands Preservation Alliance in James C. Rutherford Jr.'s name. Apparently my donation comes with a subscription to their newsletter. It looks like I will be learning a lot about the NJPB in the future ;)

Hopefully my donation can help someone with similar passions as Mr. Rutherford.
 

dragoncjo

Piney
Aug 12, 2005
1,370
camden county
I thought when this thread initially went up that it was Jim Rutherford, however the TLA was throwing me off. Like Bob said the pictures didn't necessarily look like him. I didn't know Jim personally but knew people who did. He loved turtles, particularly spotted turtles and from what I know was a real good person. I believed he worked for Andrea Teti as a environmental consultant doing bog turtle and pine snake work.
 

The_Lizard_King

New Member
May 2, 2017
1
America
Hello everyone. First, allow me to clear up what TLA is. In this case, it stands for Tamarac Lakes Association, a neighborhood in Medford, NJ. This is where Jimmy grew up, where he learned to love nature, and a place for which he held much pride. So it was his “tag” if you will.

When I was sent the philly.com article by Devon, his sister, I was fascinated and deeply moved by the curiosity and interest Jimmy. Also, a little bit shocked that others had discovered the memorial as well. You have, in fact, stumbled upon one of his favorite locations, an area he had plans to make a camp and carve a path through the swamp behind to get a canoe to the river. His own fortress of solitude.

I was privileged enough to have enjoyed Jimmy's friendship for close to half my life. He was such a unique individual, and had an unquenchable thirst for adventure and life. He was living his dream, and I don't know many others who can honestly say that. His passion towards everything he did was contagious, and it was impossible to have a bad time when you were with him.

At 21 he took a 3 month sabbatical down along the east coast in search of swamps, snakes, turtles, and enlightenment, and luckily for us, brought a video camera. Actually, if memory serves correctly, I believe he took the first one a little too far into the swamp and I had to overnight a new one to him wherever he was staying at the time. Greg (in the article) made DVD's out of all the tapes for us all, and when I read this article, I scoured my home for them to find a certain clip. Out of about 15 DVD's, the first one I put in to watch contained what I was searching for.

I can assure you that the snake was alive and well in the picture posted previously. Jimmy showed no fear when encountering reptiles that would make most people run the other way. He was one with nature, resonating along with the forest and its creatures.

With permission, I'm proud to share with you what Jimmy considered one of his greatest accomplishments in life.


Thanks to everyone in this thread, especially OP for starting it and tidying up the beers and Subltelikeatrex for your internet sleuthing and donation. You guys made me feel feelings the last two days! Please enjoy visiting with Jimmy, and share you stories with him, as he would have had a cold beer and warm sushi waiting at his camp if you happened upon it. Just remember: pack in, pack out!


Brian
 

Teegate

Administrator
Site Administrator
Sep 17, 2002
22,933
Thanks Brian. That river he was going to get a canoe to is the Sleeper (on old maps called the Mechescatuxen Branch), and it is massively choked from Beavers so he would have not had an easy time of it. The beavers have pretty much destroyed that swamp. That property right where his memorial is at is the corner to one of the oldest surveyed properties around there having been surveyed in 1762. In fact, standing at his memorial years ago you could still see the location of the Rockwood stone which has been stolen. The much more recent Wharton monument is still there and I am sure you have noticed it if you have been there in the winter.

I am sorry for your loss. I would have met him at one of our PBX hikes but after he was notified of the hike his dad responded telling us of his passing.

Guy
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
7,853
millville nj
I think I would have liked Jimmy! Caught my first Cottonmouth in the Everglades a couple years ago and have caught a few rattlers as well.I also have a few private "camps" with crik access in the barrens.I would have shared them with Jimmy in a flash had I known Him.
 

manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
7,853
millville nj
The Cottonmouth I caught did the same thing.He actually flipped out from under the hook.I"ve never had a snake do that before.They are wickedly strong snakes.Now I know why the guy at the Serpentarium south of Orlando had his wife pin the back of a fat cottonmouth before he reached down and grab the pinned head to milk the snake.It was so it didn't flip out from the pin as He reached down to grab it.
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
12,055
Pines; Bamber area
The Cottonmouth I caught did the same thing.He actually flipped out from under the hook.I"ve never had a snake do that before.They are wickedly strong snakes.Now I know why the guy at the Serpentarium south of Orlando had his wife pin the back of a fat cottonmouth before he reached down and grab the pinned head to milk the snake.It was so it didn't flip out from the pin as He reached down to grab it.

Rattlers are strong too, as this guy found out the hard way:

http://www.pressofatlanticcity.com/...cle_d7989168-9929-11e0-88ae-001cc4c03286.html
 
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manumuskin

Piney
Jul 20, 2003
7,853
millville nj
I wonder if He made the mistake of casually letting the body of the snake lay across his arm which is a bad move.They will immediately grip your arm like any snake and use the gained leverage to yank and twist their head out of your grip just enough to twist around an hook a fang in you.If you use the behind the head grip with one hand and hold the tail out with the other hand it stops that wiggling.It would have been easier to tail the snake off the ground and then lift the upper body with the stick and support it to the side of the road,safer as well.I"ve caught four rattlers and never even came close to being bit but the trick that Cottonmouth pulled scared me.Never seen anything like that.You can't tail them because they never try to flee but assume a coil and show their cotton.They can strike straight up and in a 360 from that position so the only way to catch them is pinning.It also was almost too dark to see which wasn't a good thing either.
 

JimmysMom

New Member
May 3, 2017
1
Medford, NJ
To Everyone on the NJPB Forum

First of all, let me say that my family found all the posts and interest about Jimmy's memorial site very heartwarming. I am glad the mystery has been solved for all of you.
This spot in the pines was a special place for Jimmy, so it was fitting to have a little memorial there. Jason Nark's article in the Phila Inquirer was very special and we are forever grateful for his interest in getting Jimmy's story out there.

Jimmy always wrote TLA everywhere (for Tamarac Lakes Association"). I am a watercolor artist and have always signed my name that way with the L and A linked. (My name is Lael). A little tribute to Jimmy.

To "subtlelikeatrex"...Thank you again for your wonderful donation. Pinelands Preservation Alliance sent a letter to us to let us know, and when I didn't recognize your name, I contacted them to see if they knew who you were, but they did not. Now that mystery is solved. You must be a very special person.

Brian (Lizard King), thanks for your post. You will always be special to us no matter how far away you are. You are a part of our family. You were a great friend to Jim. You and all his buddies have given us much support after his death. We love you all.

It's been nine years for us since our son died. His Dad, his sister Devon, and I, miss him everyday.
When your child dies, all you want is for him to be remembered...

Jimmy's Mom
 

bobpbx

Piney
Staff member
Oct 25, 2002
12,055
Pines; Bamber area
Thank you Lael. Jimmy had a wonderful, vibrant personality. He had that spark, that unusual brightness that many people never attain. I'm glad I got to know him, if only for a short time.