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James's Story

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James Ellsworth Griffin spread his wings and "went west", leaving this mortal world on September 9, 2017, four days after experiencing a massive stroke. Born December 19, 1929, the oldest child of R.D. Griffin and Lois Dill Case Griffin, Jim spent his nearly 88 years in Benzonia MI, Washington D.C., Rockville MD, Titusville FL, Laurel MD, and Live Oak FL. He is survived by the love of his life, Mary Ruth Mason Griffin to whom he was married for 64 years; the two children they raised together, James Henry Griffin (Donna Thornton Griffin) and Mary Louise Griffin (Dennis McGilligan); and seven grandchildren, Carol (Julius Cruz), James, Erin, and William Griffin and Tobin, Fiona, and Liam McGilligan. He is further survived by his sister and brother-in-law, Virginia Griffin Best (David) and their children, David Best, Linda (Dave) Munn, Lois (Michael) Mercier, Mark (Kathy) Best, their grandchildren and great-grandchildren; and other family and many friends. He was predeceased by his parents and in-laws, Henry Lloyd Mason and Chlorus Ruth Kunkleman Mason. An engineering physics graduate from George Washington University, Jim spent most of his career in various positions with the federal government. He enjoyed family, general aviation flying, and electronics and was active in his church and in community theatre, performing many roles both on and off stage. In 1992, Jim and Mary moved to their retirement home at a private airpark where he built three experimental aircraft; a Velocity, a Rotorway helicopter, and a SeaRay amphibian (boat/plane hybrid). He also enjoyed his membership in the Quiet Birdmen, serving as the Beam Man and preparing the monthly notes for the Kitty Hawk Estates chapter. There will be no service; his ashes are interred at the Foundry United Methodist Church Columbarium in Washington D.C. which the family will visit at a future date. Always a source of knowledge and support, we will miss him greatly until our spirits meet again. Go in peace, we love you forever.
Published on November 20, 2017
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