James Thomas Puglis, 69, died Wednesday, June 10, 2020 at Life's Journey Hospice in Avon following a brief illness. Born in Paterson, New Jersey he lived a good portion of his early life in Monticello, New York. He attended Don Bosco Preparatory School in Ramsey, New Jersey participating in the ROTC program graduating in 1969 with the intention of attending Annapolis Naval Academy. A change in the family situation resulted in him giving up his appointment to Annapolis. Instead he enrolled in the University of Houston and obtained a BA in English. He pursued a modeling and acting career performing in a variety of dinner theaters in Houston, Texas. His life took a sudden turn resulting in the end of his career when he was critically injured after being struck by a car while walking his dog on Christmas Eve in 1975. After a long period of rehabilitation although remaining with a life changing disability, he was able to return to work as a substitute teacher.
Jim chose every day not to be defined by his disability. He had a positive attitude towards life, a contagious smile and a big heart always willing to listen and to provide support and love. He was a gentle soul, kind and empathetic. As a young man he attained the rank of Eagle Scout and demonstrated their principal values in his entire life. He faced his life changing challenges with bravery and acceptance. He enjoyed reading science fiction, listening to 60's music, and could often be heard singing many of the songs from the musicals he was casted in.
James will always be the beloved brother to his surviving sisters Jane (Bill) Westdyke, Sandy (Tim) Elsner and Annette Broderick and often referred to himself as their "One and Only". He also leaves behind 2 nieces, 3 nephews, 5 great nieces and 1 great nephew and many friends. He was predeceased by his mother, Anne Puglis who passed away this year and his father James Puglis who passed away in December of 1980.
Visitation will be Wednesday, June 17, 2020 at Flanner Buchanan - Speedway, 2950 N. High School Rd. from 10-1pm with services immediately following at 1pm, followed by a private burial.