JAMES MURRAY GRINDLAY
January 08, 1923 – October 22, 2014
Jim Grindlay had a knack for side-stepping death. He
recovered from childhood Scarlet Fever before the availability of penicillin. He survived combat in WWII,
including a head wound from shrapnel. The heart disease that afflicted him in mid-life didn’t stop him. Neither did the colorectal cancer he developed at 89. Nor did the late-life dementia. He didn’t succumb to any of his ailments. He just kept going until he finally wore out at the age of 91 1/2.
Jim was born in Kilsyth, Scotland on January 8, 1923. He was the middle of three sons. Unlike his brothers, Jim grew disillusioned with school and dropped out after grade nine. He entered his father’s joinery and construction business, and became a skilled carpenter. But not before slicing off the tip of one of his fingers with a table saw.
At 18, Jim became a soldier. He joined the British army’s Royal Artillery, where he trained to be part of a gun crew. He received additional training as a radio specialist and
vehicle operator. He particularly enjoyed driving heavy trucks and motorcycles. He was first off his landing craft on D-Day. (Not by choice, he admitted).
After the war, Jim emigrated to South Africa where he met Eunice Basketer, also from Britain. They were married in King William’s Town on July 16, 1949. Both were concerned about the unfair racial situation in South Africa, and so
emigrated to Canada.
They settled in Chatham, Ontario. Jim established a home renovation business and later a building supply company that both proved successful. He and Eunice raised two sons and a daughter – Jim Jr., Sandy and Maggie – and were
active participants in service clubs and amateur theatre.
In September 1969, the family moved to Kelowna, BC. Jim became a cabinetry manufacturer, and again, his natural business skills led to success. When he retired years later, The Federal Business Development Bank employed him as an advisor to local companies.
Jim was a past-president of the Kelowna Capri Rotary Club. He was also an avid golfer and tennis player.
Jim was predeceased by his daughter Maggie in 2005 and by his wife Eunice in 2011. His older brother Charles died in 1989. Jim is survived by his son Jim Jr., Jim Jr.’s daughters Laura and Sarah, his son Sandy and his wife Judi, and Maggie’s daughters Jennifer and Stephanie. Jim’s younger brother, Walter also survives him.
In lieu of flowers, please make donations to The Canadian Cancer Society, the Alzheimer Society of Canada or the Heart and Stroke Foundation.
A memorial service will be held November 10 at 1 pm at The Hotel Eldorado, 500 Cook Road, Kelowna, BC.
Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.springfieldfuneralhome.com, 250-860-7077.