|Birth: ||Dec. 23, 1931|
|Death: ||Jun. 8, 2009|
James Michael O'Brien died on Monday, June 7, 2009, following a lengthy lung disease which he fought bravely until his last day. He was born on December 23, 1931 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to parents James Patrick and Catharine McDonald O'Brien. Jim grew in up in South Philadelphia, attending West Catholic High School which is where his love for basketball began. He attended Canisius College on a basketball scholarship.
After serving in the U.S. Army, Jim came south to Jacksonville and played basketball for Gibbs Shipyards. Gibbs Shipyards was the beginning of his near fifty year career in the shipyard business. He worked many years for Weedon Engineering, remaining a good friend with Mr. Weedon. Jim ended his career managing sales for Halp, Inc.
Jim met Nora Ann McColskey on a blind date; they married in December of 1957. While she learned to cook scrapple and spam for this boy from the north; she also brought him around to the southern ways of eating with her fresh vegetables and chicken pot pie. After battling breast cancer at a young age, Nora died in October 1978. Jim did not remarry. He is survived by his daughters, Catherine (David) Graham and Erin (Scott) Nooney; six grandchildren; Joshua, Joseph and Benjamin Graham; Jeffery, Caroline, and Hank Nooney. In addition Jim is survived by his two sisters; Pat Balog and Kathleen Stephens as well many nieces and one nephew. After his days on the basketball court, Jim along with his wife Nora; developed a love for the game of tennis and spent many weekend days on the tennis courts where he made many friends. His frequent tennis partner, A. Darrell Brown remained one of Jim's best friends even after the tennis playing ended. Jim was blessed with supportive and loving neighbors including Jessie and Belle, Tommy and Shelia and Robin.
His love of athletics was matched by his life long passion for reading; from the classics to the most current literature, there was little he had not read. Jim was a colorful character and will be dearly missed by his two daughters and their families and his friends. He was known by his grandchildren as Papa Jim; they will never forget him.
Nora Ann McColskey O'Brien (1935 - 1978)*
Note: beside Nora Ann O'Brien
Plot: Section N east, row 7
Created by: Scott Beacham
Record added: Mar 09, 2013
Find A Grave Memorial# 106404346