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Georgia Gladys Smith Griggs
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Birth: Feb. 22, 1922
Multnomah County
Oregon, USA
Death: Mar. 1, 2011
Multnomah County
Oregon, USA

Georgia Gladys (Smith) Griggs Born in Portland, Oregon February 22, 1922. Died March 1, 2011 in Gresham, Oregon. Her family moved to Silverton when she was 11 to 'homestead' property there. After graduating from Silverton high school, Georgia moved through the clerical ranks to become Executive Secretary for the Iron Fireman Company in the early 50's. She was once known as the fastest typist and stenographer in Oregon, able to capture the words of any playing song in shorthand.

Georgia married Bruce Griggs on Christmas Eve in 1945. They briefly lived in Kooskia, Idaho, then moved home to Portland to raise a family. Their six children are David Griggs, Vicki Griggs, James Griggs, Jorjean Henson, and Gary Griggs of Portland, and Janice Vasquez of Morgan Hill, CA. She is survived by her children, two generations of grandchildren, and one sister, Edna Spainhower, also of Portland.

Georgia began facing a lifelong challenge with mental illness in 1951 with the onset of paranoid schizophrenia, but her desire to be a good mother and household contributor remained strong even when the disease affected her ability to make good decisions. Her exceptionally sweet, quiet demeanor was sometimes displaced by frustration, but she gave it her best and on occasion, right into the 80's, she found and succeeded in employment, such as working for Montgomery Ward.

Raising six children can be difficult when resources are limited, but Georgia never stopped wanting the best for her family. When Bruce was operating a vehicle salvage business, he would often be out of town for months at a time. The family was sometimes helped by the efforts of the Sunshine Division and Toy and Joy Makers, but mostly by an equally sweet band of sisters, and her mother Nellie Ann (Hawkins) Smith. Georgia was the youngest of a large family of brothers and sisters, and they all recognized a need to pitch in and help the family where they could. Even as her final days approached, Georgia often conveyed a sincere desire that her imaginary "riches" would ensure her children faced a secure future. As you view these details of one person's struggle with disease and poverty, her children want you to know that through it all both their parents instilled a deep sense of integrity and compassion for others, even as they themselves struggled to be consistent in providing for their children. We experience both a resounding joy that the struggle has ended, and a profound sadness that she endured a long life with only a few moments of reward that we shared together. It brings us comfort to know that in her early years she was completely committed to a savior, Jesus the Messiah, and believe that her mental illness was neither the curse of an angry god nor a reason to prevent a peaceful eternity. She is now in Abraham's bosom enjoying clear thought for the first time in a long time.

As of this writing, the family is planning a celebration of her life near the Easter Holiday. When arrangements are established we will do our best to advertise the time, place, and audience that might want to share her life with us. If you, a reader, wish to be notified of such an event, please send an email to Georgia's son, David, at to be placed on our notification list. 
Family links: 
  Orion Ruel Smith (1878 - 1956)
  Nellie Ann Hawkins Smith (1885 - 1972)
  Bruce William Griggs (1921 - 1997)
  Orion James West Smith (1903 - 1957)*
  Julius Earl Smith (1904 - 1908)*
  Bertha May Smith Rothery (1906 - 2004)*
  Charley Curtis Smith (1913 - 2005)*
  Nellie Marie Smith Richardson (1919 - 2001)*
  Georgia Gladys Smith Griggs (1922 - 2011)
*Calculated relationship
Willamette National Cemetery
Multnomah County
Oregon, USA
Plot: 2, 0, 4060
Created by: Jeff Friday
Record added: Mar 02, 2011
Find A Grave Memorial# 66367137
Georgia Gladys <i>Smith</i> Griggs
Added by: Jeff Friday
Georgia Gladys <i>Smith</i> Griggs
Added by: Jeff Friday
Georgia Gladys <i>Smith</i> Griggs
Added by: Penny Wood Spaziani
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- Penny Wood Spaziani
 Added: Nov. 6, 2013

- Kathy Sidenstricker
 Added: Mar. 2, 2011

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