ESCONDIDO, Calif. — James Dorward Raitt IV, 46, of Escondido, California, passed away unexpectedly during emergency heart surgery at Palomar Hospital in Escondido on Tuesday, Aug. 29, 2017.
James was born June 14, 1971, in the Naval Air Station Hospital in Jacksonville, Florida, to Jim and Gail (Black) Raitt. His name was handed down from his great-great-great-grandfather, a sea captain from Scotland. He was the oldest of three brothers, which include Joel, who lives in Wisconsin, and Ryan, who lives in San Diego, who moved close to his beloved brother and worked beside him on many occasions. James attended school in Genoa and went on to graduate from the University of Nebraska with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English. On July 26, 1995, he married the love of his life, Delia “Lia” Montejano, in Ralston.
After working for the Department of Education in Hastings, James and Lia moved to California in 1999 to pursue his creative dreams to work in the entertainment industry. James initially worked at the production facilities The Cut Hut, Popflash and Heiroglyphics before proudly starting his own company in 2012, Digital Wrath Inc., where he was creative director/art director/visual FX and graphics artist.
James excelled at providing graphics and special effects to his clients in broadcast television and stage screen. His work has earned multiple Promax awards, which honors outstanding broadcast content. He was so proud to create content for his favorite band Van Halen. In recent years he produced content for Comic-Con in San Diego, being involved with some of his favorite movies and was thrilled to be working alongside a “Star Wars” panel. He also had a successful YouTube channel called ClipCritics with partners Chad Sahley and Curt Apanovich. He portrayed the character of Zoron. The content they created garnered many fans who tuned in for a good laugh. It was a perfect showcase for James' unique sense of humor and creativity.
He inspired and mentored many collaborators, and was admired by countless business associates and co-workers. He was loved and adored by friends and family for his quick wit, wicked sense of humor, loyalty and thoughtful and caring nature. He was truly one of a kind.
James’ wife Lia, family and dogs occupied much of James’ heart. He loved their four Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers Raimi, Sawyer, Inbee and Henrik and little Pomeranian Archie. Lia and James spent many happy times with training and going to trials and meets with the many amazing friends they made with their dog family. Raimi was his heart dog and the two were bonded and inseparable. He was a wonderful and loving dog dad.
He is survived by his loving wife, Lia Raitt of Omaha; parents, Jim and Gail of Prairie du Sac, Wisconsin; brother, Joel Raitt of Lodi, Wisconsin; brother, Ryan (Allison) Raitt of San Diego; grandparents, James and Barbara Black of Yankton, South Dakota, and Arline Raitt of Genoa; mother- and father-in-law, Ray and Esperanza Montejano of Omaha; nephews and nieces, Joseph and Savannah Walters of Lee’s Summit, Missouri, Madeline and Christopher James Raitt of San Diego, California, Kylie (Kaiyzer) Ballweg and Claire Raitt of Sauk City, Wisconsin, and Courtney Raitt of Milford; and many aunts, uncles and cousins.
He was preceded in death by his sister-in-law Elle Polly Walters (8/11/13).
There will be a celebration of life from 2-5 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 30, at 9340 Dowdy Drive, San Diego, and from 2-5 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 15, at Lewis and Clark Lodge in Yankton, South Dakota.