I have known Jim and Beth Thompson since I moved to Winnemucca, Nevada. Jim and Beth have raised six amazing kids. Jim has taught me to be humble, work hard and things will always work out. Beth has taught me to stand up straight, and stick to my job until it sticks to me. Their example has taught me what it means to be an equal partner in a marriage. They are both fully engaged on the ranch and in rearing their family.
Jim and Beth have always wanted to raise their family on a ranch, and they have sacrificed in order for this dream to come true. I must mention they have worked and helped Beth’s parents John and Pat Aitken for nearly 40 years on their ranch in Winnemucca. Jim is the first to admit that his wife’s parents have been a great blessing in their life, and they could not have accomplished their hopes and dreams without their help.
Jim was born in Idaho Falls, ID and has always liked agriculture. Jim’s family has been involved in agriculture for generations. His brother-in-law farmed in Eastern Idaho and Kings River Valley Nevada. A few years after high school Jim moved to Nevada to work on the Kings River farm for his brother-in-law. The initial year on the farm in Nevada was tough. That year was every bit as dry as this year has been and the crops suffered. It was at this time he met his future wife Beth.
Beth (Aitken) Thompson was born on her father’s dairy in Roseville California. Her family sold the dairy and moved to Nevada when Beth was nine years old. Beth’s father’s family purchased two ranches one on the river in Winnemucca and the other near the Jackson Mountains some 50 miles northwest of Winnemucca and began running beef cows.
They have run as many as 600 cows on the ranch in Winnemucca, up until the large brush fire of 2007 which burned off much of their range. Consequently, the Thompsons had to cut back the herd. However, what they lack in cows they make up for in grandchildren.
Even though Jim and Beth were able to raise their family on the ranch, they will be the first to admit, it was not easy. Jim has worked as a potato factory worker, a potato quality inspector, and as a milk delivery man for Model Dairy in order to make ends meet. Beth has been a substitute teacher for Humboldt County, while raising her family and working on the ranch.
Whenever, I begin to doubt my goal of milking a few cows and bottling milk. I think of the patience of Jim and the persistence of Beth. They have been a great example to me over the years, and I am proud to call them “friends”.
Jim’s Lessons Learned-
1-Become a dentist first, then a rancher
2-There is no better place to raise a family than in agriculture
5-Learn your trade well
6-Get an education it will help you work smarter
7-Marry your best friend
8-Marry somebody you can work with
9-Never Give up
10-Count your blessings