John William Griffin Jr.
1972 - 2020
Ahern Funeral Home - Hartford
180 Farmington Avenue
Hartford, CT
March 11, 1972 - March 5, 2020. John William Griffin Jr. of West Hartford, CT died at home with family and close friends after an extended yet valiant battle with cancer on March 5, 2020. John was born in Washington, DC to Carolyn Johnson Griffin and the late John William Griffin. He grew up in Alexandria, VA, and graduated from Episcopal High School (Alexandria) and Wesleyan University with a degree in Modern European History in 1994. In both high school and college he played varsity football and lacrosse, and he was a member of Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. After college he worked in New York City at Chemical Bank, Bear Stearns, Lazard Freres, Credit Suisse First Boston (also in London), UBS Securities, and Numerix, handling the post-bankruptcy of the estate of Lehman Brothers Holdings. He moved to Hartford ten years ago to work for the Hartford Investment Management Co. in Risk Management. He was a featured speaker at many financial conferences during that time. John is survived by his mother, and three sisters, Jennifer Griffin (Greg Myre), Caitlin Penny (Carlos Penny) and Cassie Gordon Grant (Conrad Gordon Grant), his beloved nieces and nephews, Annalise, Amelia and Luke Myre, and Lachlan Gordon Grant, and cousins. His many friends in Hartford, New York City and Virginia will always remember his wry wit, outsized personality, and his kind and gentle soul. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation in memory of John's name to The Prevent Cancer Foundation Arrangements are being handled by The Ahern Funeral Homes, Inc. To send online condolences to the family, please visit
Published by Hartford Courant on Mar. 8, 2020.
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9 Entries
I recently heard about the passing of John....or "Griff" as I will always remember him by. I had the pleasure and honor of playing defense with him at Wesleyan for 4 years. We made up the starting 3 close "D" that helped bring our team the NESCAC championship game in 1994.
What I remember John most for was the fact that he had this very tough outward presence, but in his heart he was a puppy dog. He always had our back.
I want to share a funny story about him from our Spring Training Trip in Florida. He went to the beach with some friends between practices and ended up getting a pretty significant sunburn.... bright red. Anyway the next day we were in a scrimmage game against another team and he went to body check a player who was coming in for a shot and he ended up hitting him a bit too much with his helmet. After the game when he was taking off his helmet, you could see he was in a bit of "discomfort". It was pretty clear to see some of the blistered skin on his forehead had peeled off. While others may have been embarrassed with this, he carried himself with pride and a bit of humor. That is what I remember about John..his strength and humor. And while I have not spoken to Griff in many years, my heart is saddened to know that my teammate, who always had my back, is no longer with us.
Douglas Dohan
December 27, 2020
I'm so sorry to learn of John's passing. We played lacrosse together at Wesleyan. He was a fierce defenseman and a loyal teammate. It was a privilege to know him and do battle with him on the lacrosse field. I will hold those memories close. My warmest regards to John's family, friends, and extended community.
Jon Bender
May 13, 2020
My heart is broken of the loss of my First cousin. My Dad Michael told me after my birthday celebration on March 11th. My Deepest Condolences to all of the family members & especially to all in the family. John was the epitome of all the qualities of a true gentleman. I think if him on our birthday we shared on March 11th. Lovely family. Our deepest condolences. Our hearts are so broken & heavy. My deepest sympathies. Thank you John for bringing such joy into our lives. Megan Griffin & Ellie Smith
May 5, 2020
My heart breaks upon hearing about the loss of John. I am so sorry for your loss. He was one of the kindest people I knew. Always a gentleman and a wonderful friend. I have many fond memories of John. When we were in middle school, we rode the bus together. I was shy around boys, but John always made me feel comfortable. I send you all my love, thoughts, and prayers.
Aida Longo
March 28, 2020
I'm so sorry to hear about Griff's passing. He was such a positive force in my time at Wesleyan. My favourite memories are playing darts in his room at DKE, hanging out with Duchess the Rottie, and listening to Romeo and Juliet when he gave me rides to/from the gym in his Volvo. We lost touch after he moved to NYC, but I always think of him when I hear Dire Straits, see an old Volvo, or meet another Rottweiler. Rest in peace, Griff.
Daniele Cote (Bucar)
March 13, 2020
It is with such a heavy heart that I learned about John's passing. I was married to his uncle - my daughter and he are first cousins who shared the same birthday. I remember him as a boy- big for his age and mistaken for being older than he was. He was full of fun.
We took him out to dinner when we were in CT and he was at Wesleyan. He regaled us with football stories. He was glad he had chosen Wesleyan over BC ( the family college) he said because he was assured of being first string. He was the epitome of all those qualities that one admires.
The world is far less without him today.
Ellie Griffin Smith
ellie smith
March 13, 2020
ellie smith
March 13, 2020
Thank you for your heartfelt conversations. Rest in Love..~Rock Corona~
Raquel Corona
March 12, 2020
I am so saddened and pained to learn of Johns passing. We dated a short while in high school. Lacrosse games, driving Caitlin home from his games with her asking me to play Roxanne by The Police over and over again (she was probably too young to remember now) and John trying to teach me to drive a stick shift in his Volvo. These are just a few of the good times we had. He once dedicated to me the Rolling Stones song Wild Horses with the lyric Wild Horses couldnt drag me away. John always had a quiet, yet unwavering determination about everything he did. I can only imagine that is the same determination he mustve used to fight his cancer for so many years. John was truly special and the world has lost a true gentleman. My thoughts and deepest sympathy to his family.
Lori Erikson
March 11, 2020
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