Marie E. Griffin
Oct 14, 1917 - Nov 14, 2012
Marie Griffin passed away peacefully at West Hills Hospital Canoga Park, CA, with Doug, her husband over fifty years, at her side.
Marie was born in Lassen, CA to Ella M. and Frank E. Santos. Marie was preceded in death by her parents and her sisters Lillian Wilson, Evelyn Mae (Tonie) Ogle, and Annabel Margaret.
Marie is survived by her husband Douglas R. Griffin, her brother, Enos F. Santos, her five daughters: La Verne George (children: Renee, Deanna, Tammy), Judy Adams (husband Frank, and children: Craig and Kirk), Jo Ann May (children: Denise, Pete, Michael, and Ashley), Sandy Horton (husband Dale, and children: David and Jolynne Marie), and Lynne Rashe (husband Wayne and children: Audrey, Donnie, and Tina), and many great grandchildren.
Marie met a young sailor, Doug, while working at Woolworths in Modesto, and from then they began more than fifty years of a shared life together. Marie and Doug were married in Carson City, NV, on May 31, 1962. Their first home together was in Mountain View, CA. Doug was stationed at Moffet Field and Marie worked in Menlo Park as a grocery checker. Marie made twice the salary Doug made as an active duty Navy man. The next duty station was Lemoore, CA. They lived in Hanford, CA and managed apartments to supplement Doug's Navy pay. After Lemoore they went to Jacksonville, FL where Doug was in advanced training as an Aviation Electrician. There, Marie rode out a hurricane while Doug reported for duty. After training in Florida, Marie and Doug moved back to San Diego, CA. Doug reported for Sea Duty in VF 142 Nas Miramar. Marie was able to stay with her daughter, Sandy, in Modesto when Doug made three cruises to the South China Sea (combat area Vietnam) from 1965 to 1969. She flew over on a chartered plane of Navy Wives when Doug's ship was docked in Japan. Marie attended a party in Yokasuka and Marie and Doug rode a train to Tokyo and went to the Ginza. Then they went to Kaui, HI, where Doug was stationed for two years. While there, Marie's father died. On the trip back from San Diego, Marie had her boarding pass in Oahu, but got bumped out by the Admiral's wife- "we took the next flight." Next Marie and Doug drove from San Diego to New York. Doug had been selected for factory training at Grumman on the F14 Tomcat, made famous by Tom Cruise. Then back to San Diego for the commissioning of VF-1, one of the first fleet F14 Squadrons. Marie was escorted to her seat, and she really enjoyed that.
In 1972 and Marie and Doug had a business, Griffin's Newstand on Broadway in San Diego. Marie worked there with help from her daughter, Lynne, while Doug continued with Navy duties. In 1974 they declared bankruptcy and were left with a '64 Nova and Doug's Navy paycheck. They continued to live in El Cajon until the final Naval destination, VX4 at Pt. Mugu, CA.
Marie and Doug lived in Oxnard, CA. Marie received a letter of appreciation from the Captain, when Doug retired from the Navy in 1980. From 1980 until 1986, the two lived in Turlock, El Cajon, and West Sacramento, while Doug was earning his education. Marie worked in child care for doctors and state representatives during this time. They went back to San Diego where Doug went to work, after training for an IRS position, in 1986. Then Marie and Doug went to Laguna in 1989, when he accepted another position with the IRS, and then went to Turlock, after he obtained a law degree in 1990. In 1991, the IRS wanted Doug to work for them in Los Angeles, so they continued their life in the LA area from 1991 until 2008.
Marie accompanied Doug for every treatment when he had cancer in 2006. Marie liked to get her hair done by Carmelo at the Strand in Chatsworth, CA. Marie even got Doug to get his hair cut when she paid for it. Marie was able to get out of the house for her birthday on October 14and she and Doug ate at her favorite restaurant, The Lamplighter. She was given a piece of chocolate cake which was too rich.
Marie read the Daily Word and meditated every day. "The life I shared and saw Marie lead for over fifty years was event filled and full of the enjoyment of life." -Doug, her loving husband
A memorial service will be held at Turlock Memorial Park and Funeral Home, 425 N. Soderquist Rd., Saturday, December 22, 2012 at 1:00 P.M. with Reverend Marylee Revels officiating.
A celebration of Marie's life will be held at the VFW Hall in Modesto, following the service.
Donations to St. Labre Indian School, Asland MT 59004, www.stlabre.org, in Marie's honor are welcome.
Published in the Modesto Bee on Dec. 21, 2012