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Ramon Griggs

Birthplace: Lakewood Township, Ocean County, New Jersey, United States
Death: January 10, 2015 (86)
Lakeland, Polk County, Florida, United States
Immediate Family:

Son of George Clinton Griggs and Blanche C Griggs
Husband of Eileen C Griggs
Father of Private; Private; Private and Private
Brother of Theron Clinton Griggs; Alma Elizabeth Griggs; John Wayne Griggs and Robert Griggs

Managed by: Douglas Wayne Thompson
Last Updated:
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Immediate Family

About Ramon Griggs


LAKELAND - Ramon 'Ray' Eugene Griggs, 86, passed away peacefully at home on Saturday, January 10, 2015, due to cancer. Ray was born in Lakewood, NJ, at his parent's home on June 10, 1928, to G. Clinton and Blanche Clayton Griggs. Ramon was a hard worker and it can be said without exaggeration that he could accomplish anything that he put his mind to do. An accomplished musician at an early age and capable of playing many instruments including the piano, organ, accordion, violin, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, and sax, Ray performed at many of the Lakewood hotels with his band starting when only 15 years old. He used his earnings to pay for flying lessons and received his pilot's license when he was only 16. In NJ you were not allowed to drive a car until you were 17, so his mother had to shuttle him back and forth between Lakewood and the airport in Red Bank, NJ! During World War II, being too young to enlist in the armed services and wanting to assist in the war effort, he was a member of the Civil Air Patrol and worked as a spotter for enemy aircraft and submarines. He turned 18 after the war was over and enlisted in the U.S. Army as a musician and spent 2 great years logging 57,000 miles with a Big Band show entertaining the troops during the European Occupation. After his Army commitment was completed he obtained a great education in insurance and real estate and helped his father build Griggs Agency into a highly successful business. He built his first house before his oldest son was born and built another much larger house across the street from it just three years later. In 1959 he finished his third house referred by most as 'The Hill' on a beautiful 23 acre spread in the country (Herbertsville, NJ, now part of Brick), where he raised Christmas trees, sweet potatoes, and tons of gladiolas (his wife Eileen's favorite cut flower). During the winter months if there was a good snow you could always find friends and family taking advantage of the excellent sledding and skiing right behind his house. In 1965, inspired and encouraged by his Uncle Charley (who had been growing citrus around Lakeland for years), Ray bought a frozen-out grove and managed to turn it back into production from 1,200 miles away in New Jersey. In 1969 he fulfilled his new dream, sold Griggs Agency and The Hill, and moved his family to Winter Haven, Florida. After the Christmas Eve freeze in 1983 killed off most of his 110 acre grove, Ray decided to go back to building houses and developed the former grove into Tangerine Trails in north Lakeland. He built approximately 30 houses before selling the lots he had developed to other builders (his plan all along). Ramon belonged to several professional organizations: Lakeland (NJ) Civic Club which became Lakewood Lions International, Lakewood Rotary International, Ocean County Board of Realtors, Ocean County (NJ) Association for Insurance Agents, Lakewood, NJ, Board of Education, New Jersey Aero Club, Lakewood, NJ, Industrial Commission, NJ Christmas Tree Growers Association, Winter Haven, Florida Civitan Club. Lakeland, Florida Board of Realtors, and Polk County Home Builders Association. Ray enjoyed woodworking, playing his keyboard and organ, family gatherings, traveling extensively throughout America in RV's, cruises and traveling abroad. Christmas was his favorite holiday and he enjoyed this last Christmas immensely. His greatest accomplishment was his family; he taught the entire family life lessons through his example. We will also always remember 'watch the Florida ice' when driving in rain and 'don't eat the cheap stuff' when eating at buffets. Ray is predeceased by the love of his life, Eileen C. Griggs. They met when he was 15 & she was 13, and were married on May 22, 1949. The marriage lasted 62 years until Eileen's unexpected death in August 2011. Ramon was also predeceased by his parents, G. Clinton and Blanche Clayton Griggs, brothers Theron, Bobby, and John, his sister Alma, and his beloved grandson, William Clayton Griggs. Ramon is survived by his sons: John (Jan) Griggs, Scott (Jane) Griggs, and Kevin (Jacque) Griggs and daughter, Melissa (Joe) Whitehurst. He is survived by his sister-in-law, Barbara Griggs and the Filip Lowette Family from Belgium. He is also survived by his grandchildren: Jennie Maretti, Katie Griggs, Benjamin Clinton Griggs, Robert and Matthew Griggs, Stephanie (Jimmy) Durden, Brian (Jordan) Griggs, Brandee (Ryan) Grothouse, Emilee, Keri and Josie Griggs, Grace Griggs, Brandy, Andy, Joshua and Ethan Whitehurst, Roosje, Bieke and Gommaer Lowette, together with eight great grandchildren. He is also survived by his son, Jeff (Linda) Griggs. Ray was a member of First United Methodist Church. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you donate to the Good Shepherd Hospice, Attn: Shining Star Kris Higgins, who took such excellent care of Ray or to a charitable organization of your choice. Please contact Melissa @ if you would like info about the Going Away Party for close friends and family planned for Saturday, 1/17/15.

Published in Ledger from Jan. 13 to Jan. 14, 2015

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Ramon Griggs's Timeline

June 10, 1928
Lakewood Township, Ocean County, New Jersey, United States
January 10, 2015
Age 86
Lakeland, Polk County, Florida, United States