It is with profound sadness that the family of Clyde O. Griffin (Griff) announces the loss of an extraordinary man. On June 13, 2012, after almost 93 years of a life well-lived, he passed peacefully at home in Meadowlakes, Texas with family by his side. He was the first son born to Clyde and Minnie F. Griffin in Louisville, Kentucky on September 20, 1919. Growing up during the Great Depression was a challenge for him and his family; so, he started working as a paper boy at age 10, followed by a job in a grocery store. This began a regimen of hard work and secured a strong sense of responsibility which persisted throughout his life. ...
It is with profound sadness that the family of Clyde O. Griffin (Griff) announces the loss of an extraordinary man. On June 13, 2012, after almost 93 years of a life well-lived, he passed peacefully at home in Meadowlakes, Texas with family by his side. He was the first son born to Clyde and Minnie F. Griffin in Louisville, Kentucky on September 20, 1919. Growing up during the Great Depression was a challenge for him and his family; so, he started working as a paper boy at age 10, followed by a job in a grocery store. This began a regimen of hard work and secured a strong sense of responsibility which persisted throughout his life.
At the encouragement of his mother, Clyde, a proud member of the Greatest Generation, enlisted in the U. S. Army Aviation Corps only three days after the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Being of slight stature, he ate a bag of bananas right before he weighed in and was accepted by barely reaching the minimum weight requirement. After basic training and graduating from flight school, he was stationed in Amarillo, Texas. This is where he met, courted, and after only thirteen weeks, married Mary A. Treager (the post adjutant's secretary). He was soon stationed in the South Pacific in New Caledonia, with a variety of assignments. One of the most memorable was being chosen as the pilot to transfer Bob Hope and Jack Benny as they entertained the troops. He had many interesting stories he often shared-emphasizing that "Bob Hope never quit entertaining"! Next, he was based in Honolulu, Hawaii until he was honorably discharged in 1946. An oral history of his experiences during World War II has been placed in the archives of the Nimitz Educational and Research Center of the National Museum of the Pacific War in Fredericksburg, Texas.
Clyde and Mary moved to Louisville, Kentucky where he worked at the Brown-Foreman Distillery. This is when he became a loyal advocate for and consumer of Early Times Kentucky Whisky! During this time in 1947 their son, David Treager Griffin, was born. Subsequently, Mary's family lured them back to Amarillo with a business opportunity. It was there that their daughter, Merianne, was born in 1952. The young family moved to Marble Falls, Texas in 1954, where he bought "The Toggery" on Main Street-a men's clothing and dry-cleaning establishment. Two years later, John Nunnally, mayor and local businessman, offered Clyde a partnership in his insurance company. He became successful in this field and was still involved until shortly before his death. Nunnally, Griffin and Dockery (NGD) was a highly respected insurance and real estate firm in Marble Falls, which began in 1967. He liked to refer to himself as the "middle man". He sold his interest in the company at age 65 but continued selling life and health coverage under the name of Clyde Griffin Insurance.
After their children left the nest, Clyde and Mary traveled extensively. During this time, they became involved in the world of chili cook-offs and they participated as competitors and judges. They received many awards and made life-long friends. In fact, in 1972, they were involved in the creation of the first Howdy Roo Chili Cook-Off and Mary won Ladies' 1st place, followed by victories in Luckenbach and Terlingua. Griff was the 1982 Chilihead of the Year in Terlingua. Remarkably, Griff was in attendance every year at the Howdy Roo event from its inception through 2012.
Clyde and Mary were instrumental in the beginning stages of the local EMS. He even drove the ambulance in those early days. The Marble Falls Public Library and the Marble Falls/Lake LBJ Chamber of Commerce, among many other community endeavors, also benefitted from their enthusiasm. The walls of Griff's den and office are covered with numerous awards he received during his many years of dedication to the community he so dearly loved. His role as chairman of the board of the Marble Falls Housing Authority, now known as the Texas Housing Foundation, was very important to him. He was also passionate about his work with the Marble Falls Helping Center. He served on too many boards and committees to list and he was always eager to help make Marble Falls a better place for all.
The Griffins were active members of the First United Methodist Church until Mary passed in 2004, after a long illness. He was devoted to her, and was able to provide her with care at home during those difficult times-always an unselfish and loving mate. They were happily married almost sixty-one years.
In 1954, Clyde joined the Rotary Club of Marble Falls. Through the years, many honors were bestowed upon him, including an honorary membership in 2010. He was also a Paul Harris Fellow +5, a White Hat Society member and was inducted in the Rotary District 5870 Roll of Fame. He truly personified Rotary International's motto: "Service Above Self". He was generous in giving Paul Harris Fellowships to others.
Due to his affectionate nature, he turned his attention to a long-time friend who seemed to have a lot in common with his interests and endeavors. So, on November 20, 2005, Griff and Nance exchanged their marriage vows aboard a cruise ship in Galveston Bay, with Al Sochor, Vice President of Old Surety Life Insurance Company, officiating. A delightful honeymoon with family and friends followed. The Church at Horseshoe Bay soon became their church home. They also read a daily devotional together each morning.
Nance obtained her insurance license in 2007 and they entered into a different type of partnership-Griffin and Griffin Insurance. Their life together was punctuated by complete devotion to one another and caring for others. This ultimately brought about genuine happiness and spiritual fulfillment. Since they started later in life, they acknowledged the 20th of each month with cards, flowers and a dinner date. Consequently, they celebrated their 78th anniversary in May.
Being the revered patriarch of his loving family was another role he relished until the end. He is survived by his wife, Nance; son, David Griffin and wife, Frances of Deerfield, Illinois; daughter, Merianne Wininger and husband, Ron of Houston, Texas; grandchildren, Meredith Castro and husband, Tom with great-granddaughter, Emma of Chicago, Illinois; Brad Griffin and wife, Bethany with great granddaughter, Cayden of Chicago, Illinois; Katherine Evans and husband, John of Chesterfield, Missouri; Lauren Schauer and husband, Austin of Round Rock, Texas; brother, Lee Griffin and wife, Mona of Louisville, Kentucky; niece, Linda Vaughn and husband, Larry of Bowling Green, Kentucky; and cousin, Bill Griffin of Louisville, Kentucky. Also, left to mourn his passing are Nance's daughter, Caron Murchison; son, Trey Murchison and wife, Paige; and grandson, Dawson Murchison, all of Colleyville, Texas. Dad/Daddy/Papa G/ Granddaddy and Griff has gifted them all a treasure trove... one full of insights and countless examples of loving kindness that will be his legacy!
A memorial service will be held at The Church at Horseshoe Bay, Horseshoe Bay, Texas; Saturday, June 23, 2012 at 4:00 PM with Dr. Pete Christy and Pastor Johnny White officiating. The family would appreciate the consideration of donations to The Church at Horseshoe Bay, The Rotary Foundation, Marble Falls EMS and The Marble Falls Helping Center in memory of Clyde Griffin. Any random act of kindness with Griff in mind would be absolutely wonderful!