James Russell Corrie
July 17, 1926 — February 21, 2011
Jim was born July 17, 1926 to Vivian (Jack) and Louise Corrie in Tacoma, Washington and passed quietly away February 21, 2011 in Friday Harbor after a brief illness.
Jim was raised in Pacific Northwest lighthouses where he learned his love of the sea. His parents moved to Dungeness Light when he was 18 months old. He, along with his brother and two sisters, moved to Mukilteo Light, back to Dungeness for a time, and then to Marrowstone Island, during the war.
Jim entered the Navy in 1944 at the age of 17, and served as quartermaster aboard the troop ship USS General R.M. Blatchford. One of his assignments brought him to Nagasaki immediately after the atomic bomb was dropped on that city.
Upon leaving the Navy in 1946, he went commercial fishing and worked for Black Ball Line, which soon became Washington State Ferries. He served 38 years, most of that time as Captain on the San Juan Island run where he retired as the highly respected senior Master of the ferry system.
In the early 1950’s he competed in limited hydroplane racing, medaling in the national championship in Florida in 1952. He married Maya Jean Edgerton in 1955, moving to Friday Harbor in 1957 where his three children were born into the Island life.
The family are avid boaters and many of their friends remember all the great trips aboard the Pacific Sunrise, a converted herring seiner with lots of room for guests, fun and laughs. He and Maya are still fondly called Mom & Pops by all the ‘kids’ who were part of the crew.
Jim was a Mr. Fix-It in his hobby shop and his generous nature was known throughout the communities. You name it – he fixed it, or made a replacement part.
His beautiful custom-made ship steering wheels are on yachts throughout the world. The Port of Seattle presented two of his crafted wheels to its sister city, Kobe, Japan. Locally, his backhoe, log splitter and tractor were fixtures in the neighborhood and he took great joy in sharing his “homegrown” applesauce, cider and corn.
Jim is survived by his wife Maya, sister Lou and husband Milton Johnson, son David and wife Marianne, daughters Marilyn Corrie and Susan Smith. Granddaughters Corrie and Lacey Smith, grandsons Riley and Tanner Corrie, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Jim loved all animals, and never met a dog who didn’t love his pocket full of biscuits.
In lieu of flowers, his wishes were for donations to the Friday Harbor Animal Protection Society, P.O. Box 1355, Friday Harbor, WA 98250.He will be missed by his friends, neighbors and all who loved him. A private graveside service is planned at San Juan Valley Cemetery, with a Celebration of his Life event to be held later this Spring.
Arrangements are in the care of Evans Funeral Chapel and Crematory, Inc., Anacortes, WA and the San Juan Islands. To share memories of Jim, please sign the online guest register at www.evanschapel.com.
— The Corrie Family