Nature 45

James Wallace Sundet

February 6, 1945 ~ October 27, 2020 (age 75)

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James Wallace Sundet, 75, of Chippewa Falls, town of Lafayette, died suddenly and unexpectedly on October 27, 2020 in Odenton, Maryland.

He was born February 6, 1945 in Fond du Lac to Frances (Wille) and Wallace Sundet. He grew up in Breckenridge, MN and graduated from Breckenridge High School in 1963.

Jim continued his education at the University of Minnesota, and transferred to North Dakota State University in Fargo, graduating with a B.S. degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering.

Jim joined the U.S. Army in 1970 and proudly served until 1975.

On August 24, 1974, he married Carol Hamann at Trinity Lutheran Church in Sioux Valley, MN. 

Jim worked at Control Data in Arden Hills, MN from 1968 until 1978. At Control Data, he had project engineering responsibilities including the installation of a 7600 computer mainframe and the installation of a 6411 computer.  He also assumed Project Management responsibility for Cyber 80 diagnostics.

Jim and Carol moved to Chippewa Falls in 1978, when Jim took a job at Cray Research.  At that time, he began working on the Cray 1.  Around the mid 80’s, Jim began working as lead engineer of the Cray 2 system.  Under Jim’s leadership and with a very small group of engineers and manufacturing personnel, they built over $200,000,000 in Cray 2 systems.  In 1990, the ELS (Entry Level Systems) division was started with the purchase of Super Tech and Jim lead that team.  In 2006, Jim left Cray as Director of Engineering on the Red Storm Project for Sandia National Laboratory.

In 2006, Jim and Carol moved to Maryland and Jim finished his long engineering career working for the NSA (National Security Agency) until his death.

Jim served two terms on the Chippewa Area United Way; and both Jim and Carol volunteered at the White Pine Rehab Center in Fall Creek.

Jim was an avid long distance biker.  He and his neighbor friend rode for 12 years in the MS TRAM, “The Ride Across Minnesota” to benefit Multiple Sclerosis (MS).

Both Jim and Carol loved to travel and enjoyed the many trips to Hawaii, the Outer Banks, North Carolina, Fort Myers Beach, and many attractions along the East Coast.

Jim loved his huskies, two of which were rescues, and he spent much time loving, walking and grooming them.  They still miss all five of them.  Jim also enjoyed his ham radios and restoring his two classic 60’s cars.

He is survived by his wife Carol of Chippewa Falls; brother-in-law, Clifford (Dorothy) Hamann of Round Lake, MN; two nephews, great and great-great-nephews and nieces; and many wonderful neighbors, coworkers and dear friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents; his in-laws, Ben and Thersia Hamann; and aunts, uncles, and cousins.

Due to COVID, a celebration of Jim’s life will be held at a later date.

Pederson-Volker Funeral Chapel & Cremation Services, Chippewa Falls is serving the family.  Please share your memories and condolences online at

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