The Obit For Jim Walsh

James P. Walsh Jr.
Athlete, coach, retired insurance executive

Published in the Waterbury Republican-American on July 26, 2012

SOUTHBURY — James P. "Jim" Walsh Jr., 80, of Southbury, Conn., died Tuesday, July 24, 2012, in a vehicular accident surrounded by loved ones in person and in spirit. He was born Sept 3, 1931, in Albany, N.Y., and was the treasured husband of 57 years of Margaret (Meg) Bement Walsh and the son of the late James P. and Mildred L. Walsh of Albany, N.Y.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his beloved sister, Ellen Walsh Barber and her husband, Richard, and their five children, and his beloved brother, Edmund Walsh and his three children. He is also survived by his six much-loved children and their spouses: Michael J. Walsh and his wife, Nina, of Roxbury, Conn., James F. Walsh and his wife, Dinah, of Newtown, Conn., Kevin P. Walsh and his wife, Sandra, of Fairfield, Conn., Sharon Brace and her husband, David, of Sewell, N.J., Colleen Mars and her husband, Christopher, of Scarborough, Maine, and Mary Kathleen Ceballos and her husband, Julio, of Atlanta, Ga. He is also survived by his 20 cherished grandchildren: Ryan, Amanda, Neil, Larissa and Quinton Walsh, James and Nicholas Walsh, Kyle and Cory Walsh, Heather, David, Margaret (Maggie) and Katie Brace, Logan, Shannon, Regan and Nathan Mars, and Allexa, Connor and Cooper Ceballos.

Jim was a 1954 graduate of Siena College where he recruited to play basketball and baseball. He is remembered by his teammates as a talented natural athlete and scrappy competitor, helping his teams to many successful seasons at Siena. He was a member of the 1952-53 Siena basketball team that extended a game to six overtimes, which was the longest game in NCAA history at the time (now second longest). After completing his studies at Siena, Jim was drafted by the Brooklyn Dodgers and played for one season in the Dodgers farm system before embarking on a successful 30+ year career as an executive with the Equitable Life Assurance Co. While raising his family in Wallingford, Clinton and Newtown, Conn., and Orlando, Fla., Jim could always be found on the field coaching youth sports and was adored by his players and their parents for his commitment, integrity, love-of-the-game and sense of humor. Jim was also a loyal member of the local Catholic Church wherever the family settled and he was a Eucharistic minister. He was a dedicated member of the volunteer Ambulance Association in Heritage Village, Southbury.

Following his retirement from Equitable in the late 1980s, Jim could often be found helping his son Jimmy and grandson Jamie run the mulch yard at JF Walsh Mulch & Logging in Newtown, Conn. He made many friends there among fellow employees and customers due to his warm and caring personality and ready willingness to share a joke or funny story. He also developed the nicknames "Pops," which he loved.

Visitation hours will be held on Friday, July 27, 2012, from 5 to 8 p.m. at Sacred Heart Church, 910 Main St. South, Southbury, Conn., and a Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Saturday, July 28, 2012, at 10 a.m., also at Sacred Heart Church, Southbury. Carpino Funeral Home in Southbury is managing arrangements. www.carpinofuneralhome.com

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made to either the Sacred Heart Church 'Mustard Seed Fund," www.sacredheartchurch.info, the Heritage Village Ambulance Association, www.hvambulance.org, or Autism Speaks, www.autismspeaks.org.