James Waldrip Jr.
James Sherman Waldrip, Jr. , 96, passed away surrounded by his family on March 31, 2018 at Careage of Whidbey in Coupeville, Washington. He has lived in Coupeville since 1959 and is survived by his wife, Esther Ione (LaBrant) Waldrip, of 68 years and 6 months; daughter, Sara L. Burns and son, Peter R. Waldrip, daughter-in-law Susan M. Waldrip and eight grandchildren; Stacey, Jonathon, Matthew (wife Grace), and Martin Waldrip; Dan, Cory (wife Giovanna), and Caitlin Burns, and Rose Harris. He also had four great-grandchildren: Mason, Kevin, and June Burns and Kennedy Harris.
James was born in Olympia, Washington on December 13, 1921 to James Sherman and Bertha (Hansen) Waldrip. He grew up in the Shelton area, fishing, hunting, and hiking in the Olympics. He graduated from Shelton High School in 1940 and attended St Martins College in Olympia for a year. He enlisted in the U.S. Navy, serving from 1942-1946. He worked as an oysterman, tugboat operator, and logging truck driver, before reenlisting in 1950, serving through 1966. He married Esther Ione (LaBrant) on September 23, 1949 and moved to Hawaii where Sara was born in 1951. Peter was born in California in 1953. James led his family around the United States through his work in the Electronics rating of the Navy, living in California, Tennessee, Florida, Connecticut, and Washington. He held memberships in the Fleet Reserve Association, NRA, AARP, Whidby #15 F&AM, Apache #69, F&M, Mesa, AZ and was a 50-year Mason, holding several degrees and offices. He and his family enjoyed camping, boating, hunting. For many years he and his wife traveled to Arizona for the winter months. James reloaded ammunition, was a wood carver, and an experienced boater. He was a kind, generous, man with a contagious laugh and who enjoyed a good joke ---his presence in ours lives will be missed beyond measure. Services will be announced later. Family and friends are encouraged to share memories and condolences at www.whidbeymemorial.com.