James Dwight Elkjer M.D., 72, of Bakersfield, California, passed away peacefully on May 5, 2017, in Fullerton, California. Memorial Services will be held on Saturday, June 10, at 10:30 a.m. at Lynner Funeral Home in Clarkfield,. Pastor Doug Clevenger of the Alliance Church will be officiating services. His final resting place will be at the Clarkfield City Cemetery. Visitation will be held one hour prior to services.
Dr. Elkjer was born in Dallas, Texas, on April 20, 1945, to Dorothy Nelle (Garrison) Niazi of Dallas, Texas, and Robert Vance Elkjer of Clarkfield. He graduated from Granite Falls High School in 1963 and went on to attend the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis to receive his Bachelors degree in Zoology. He received his M.D. from the University of Minnesota Medical School in 1970. He served his country honorably as a lieutenant in the U.S. Naval Reserve from 1971 to 1973.
Dr. Elkjer practiced for 47 years as a physician. The first 10 years in emergency medicine then as a family medicine practitioner and more recently as the medical director and co-founder of an MRI imaging company in Los Angeles, California. Later in life he became an ordained minister in 2013. His interests ranged far-and-wide; he was intellectually curious, fluent in Mandarin Chinese, an avid reader, enjoyed music, food, and traveling. He was also a hunting and fishing enthusiast.
He loved an adventure and the wide-open sky, he got his pilot’s license at the tender age of 16 and against his mother’s wishes. His adult children recall the fun of flying with their pilot dad to places such as the Grand Canyon and Baja, California. He held a deep affection and love for his family and was happiest spending time with his children and grandchildren.
Dr. James Elkjer is survived by his four children: April M. Elkjer, Christian Carl Elkjer II, Dr. Suzanna Jane Elkjer Wharton, and James Robert Brendan Elkjer, and his grandchildren: Galen Hunter Elkjer and Ai Sophia Yamada; as well as other extended family and friends. He was preceded in death by his mother, Dr. Dorothy Nelle Niazi and stepfather Dr. Suad A. Niazi, as well as his father Robert Vance Elkjer who passed away when he was four years old.