James B. Dykes Sr., 89, of Ridgefield, CT, peacefully passed away on Aug. 21, surrounded by his family. He was the loving husband of the late Carol (Duflocq) Dykes.
Jim was born in Port Washington on Oct. 15, 1928; the eldest son of the late Bernard and Margaret (Orr) Dykes. President of his high school class, high school hall of fame basketball player and crooner for the Schreiber High School musicals, “JD” began his college education at Georgetown University for whom he continued playing basketball until his enlistment with the United States Marine Corps for honorable service in the Korean War.
A career in the textile industry, a marriage to “the love of my life” and five children later, Jim continued his education with evening courses wherever he and his family were living at the time; Fordham University, St. Lawrence University, University of Delaware and Columbia University. Continuing his lifelong dream of earning a college degree, Jim was recently accepted and enrolled in an English degree program at Western Connecticut State University, had completed one assigned reading and had begun another, in spite of the fact that classes had not yet begun.
Once retired from an outstanding 20 year career as Senior Vice President of ITT Rayonier for whom he traveled the world, Jim took his passions for the English language and crossword puzzling by creating and publishing Crossword Busters, a reference tool for the rest of us who often “get stuck” while puzzling.
A gifted athlete, when Jim was not looking into the meaning of words and their usage, one would most certainly find him perfecting his game on either the golf course or tennis courts.
Before retiring to Ridgefield Crossings where he founded the Speaker Series, became the Residents Council President and returned to his love for the game of bridge, Jim served as member and president of the Ridgefield Men’s Club.
Jim is survived by his five children: Nancy Corn and her husband, Jay; Karen Lucas and her husband, Gregory; James Dykes Jr. and his wife, Catherine Tango; John Dykes and his wife, Patricia; and Christopher Dykes and his wife, Sarah. Jim is survived by 11 grandchildren, one great-grandchild and another, “on the way”
“And then there was one.” Jim is survived by his brother and best friend, Bernard “Babe” Dykes.
A mass of Christian burial was held on Aug. 27, at St. Mary’s Church. Interment with U.S. Military honors followed in Nassau Knolls Cemetery.
Heartfelt and most special thanks go to the team of friends and caregivers at Ridgefield Crossings and Caring Hospice.