BLAIR, James Boardman
James Boardman Blair, known to all as Jim, of Old Lyme, passed into eternal life on Thursday, November 7th after a courageous battle with leukemia. Born in Manchester, CT on May 23, 1948 to James T. and Elizabeth Havey Blair, he spent his childhood years in the Bolton and Manchester area. He graduated from Manchester High School in 1966. During his high school years Jim was a member of the Roundtable Singers. He played on the Manchester High School Golf team and was recognized as the number one golfer in the State of Connecticut. After high school he attended Mitchell College then enlisted in the United States Air Force. During the most intense part of the Vietnam War he served his country as a Morse Code Translator. After graduating from the University of Connecticut in 1974 Jim found that his passion was to appraise real estate. In 1986 he purchased Riess Appraisal Company, based in Norwich. Jim prided himself on having an office environment that was his second home. Not only was he a boss, he was a brother, father and best friend to his staff. Jim's infectious smile, quick wit and extensive knowledge of real estate earned him not just clients but lifelong friends. On January 2, 1988 he married Amanda Allen at St. Ann's Church in Old Lyme, Connecticut. It was there that their two loving children, James Allen Blair and Haley Gifford Blair were baptized and served as acolytes. Jim was actively involved at St. Ann's Church. He served on the Old Lyme Board of Assessment Appeals for over 20 years and was on the Board of Trustees for Essex Savings Bank. As a loving father he was always involved in his children's activities, coaching baseball, cheering on their sports teams and sharing his love of music, especially The Grateful Dead. Along with his wife Amanda and children James and Haley, he is survived by his two sisters, Jan England and Sheri Gowac, his father-in-law Stuart Allen and their families. He was predeceased by his wonderful dogs Hoagie, Beamer and Mcgwire. Jim was an avid skier and spent many years in the Mount Snow/Stratton area, where he owned a home. He taught his children and others the joy of skiing. He enjoyed boating and traversed the Black Hall and Connecticut Rivers for many years. August was reserved for Maine where he enjoyed cruising the Casco Bay and spending time with his family and friends on Littlejohn Island. As an avid sports fan of the Connecticut Huskies, Red Sox, Giants and the game of Golf, a four season's man, he was always commenting on a sports event and cheering his teams on. It is ironic that his team won the World Series but Jim lost his battle. Jim taught so many friends and loved ones the value of family and friends, to "think before you criticize", and to laugh and love. In Jim's memory please echo his footsteps by passing on a funny joke or performing a random act of kindness for a stranger or a friend.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, November 23 at 1 p.m. in St. Ann's Church, Old Lyme. Calling Hours will be held on Friday, November 22 from 4-7 p.m. also at St. Ann's. Please visit www.fultontherouxoldlyme.com for photos, tributes, directions and more service information. In lieu of flowers, please make donations in Jim's memory to St. Ann's Church in Old Lyme, CT or Friend's of Casco Bay, www.cascobay.org.