James Gardner Stratton, Jr.

LT. COL., US ARMY (RET.)

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Jim was born in Annapolis, MD, on January 1, 1929, and passed away, peacefully on May 22, 2020. He was 91 years old and was preceded by his parents, James and Ellen Marie Stratton and his sister, Doris Virginia Christenson.

He is survived by the love of his life, his wife of 68 years, Beverly, and their children, Linda Gayle, Susan Leigh Taylor and her husband Don, and son James Michael. Their grandchildren Kyle Stratton Taylor and Kelli Brynn Meyers and her husband, Zach, brought wonderfully happy times and he adored them.

Jim retired from the Army after a 30 year career which included posts from Virginia to Germany to Vietnam and Hawaii with others in between. His two tours in Vietnam earned him two Bronze Stars and a Legion of Merit among many other awards. Worthy of most of the reminiscing was his five years as a crew member of the Blue Eagles. During that assignment he served as Logistics Officer aboard a C-135 flying out of

Hickam AFB in Hawaii. The Blue Eagles acted as an Airborne Command Post in the event a nuclear attack disabled ground resources. He often remarked how great it felt to serve alongside so many for whom he had such great respect.

Other than his career and family, Jim’s passion was golf, so he taught Bev so they could share great times together, and they did. Their retirement in Sun City West was all he had hoped for and lasted for almost thirty years. He felt his life was full and he was happy with what seemed a perpetual smile. He was heard saying so often “I’m a really lucky guy”. His family knows they were the lucky ones.

The last few years brought health challenges because of Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s but, in spite of all he remained kind and loving.

Lots of reasons for no services at this time but we know those who cared for him will remember Jim with a smile and a happy thought. He should not be mourned for long but celebrated as the fine officer and gentleman and loving family man

he was.