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In Memoriam: James Garrigues

posted Dec 6, 2015, 11:38 PM by Atcm Designer   [ updated Dec 6, 2015, 11:42 PM ]
James Garrigues, the son of Selah and Viva Rising Garrigues, was born in Great Bend, Kan., on Sept. 1, 1927. He attended high school in Great Bend, and joined the U.S. Navy and after returning to Kansas.  He graduated from Fort Hays Kansas State College with a Bachelor of Science in History and education. 

In 1953, James married Julia Harris of Hays, Kan. He moved to Anchorage in 1954 and taught at the old Central High School. In 1958, he created a business to clear timber from building sites and utility lines. His interest in local government led him to seek and win a seat on the Anchorage Borough Assembly in 1967. In 1971, James was reelected to the Borough Assembly and became the presiding officer. He served on the first Anchorage Charter Commission, whose task was to develop a charter unifying the borough and city. 

Thorough out his life, James worked in a variety of construction jobs including the DEW line and the Trans-Alaska Pipeline. His love of history, government, politics and reading led to his involvement in the political process and political campaigns. He ran for the state legislature in the 1990s as a Democrat. He was a member of the American Legion Post 28 and the Elks Lodge. 

James is survived by his daughter, Gayle Garrigues of Fairbanks; son, Martin Garrigues and daughter-in-law, Alisa Brown Garrigues of Anchorage; and granddaughters, Marisa Garrigues and Jana Garrigues Haugstad of Anchorage. His memorial service was held on Oct. 17, 2015, at the Baxter Road Church in Anchorage. Donations can be made to the Boy Scouts of America or your local library.