Cover photo for James  Martin  Waddell's Obituary
James  Martin  Waddell Profile Photo
1933 James 2017

James Martin Waddell

November 30, 1933 — January 11, 2017

James Martin “Jim” Waddell, 82, of Boulder, died on Wednesday, January 11, 2017, surrounded by his family. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church, 1318 Mapleton, Boulder, on Friday, January 27, 2017 at 10:00 A.M., followed by a reception at the church. Graveside services will then follow at Fort Logan National Cemetery at 1:30 P.M. at staging area B. Military Honors will be provided by the United States Army. Jim was born on March 15, 1934 to John and Norma (DiPiero) Waddell of Columbus, OH. He attended the St. Aloysius Military Academy in New Lexington, OH and the Marmiom Military Academy-ROTC in Aurora, IL. In 1955, Jim received his Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from General Motors Institute of Technology in Flint, MI. He also took electrical courses during his time in the military as well as while at IBM. On June 28, 1954, Jim entered the United States Army. He worked as an Atomic Weapons Electronic Assembler, serving in the Army Ordnance Special Weapons Battalion until March 27, 1957. He was then in the Ohio Army Reserves until June 27, 1962. During Jim’s time in the military he earned a Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, and was recognized as a Sharpshooter (Carbine). On April 1, 1955, Jim married Phyllis June Grizzell in Albuquerque, NM. They have been residents of Boulder County for 51 years. Jim worked for IBM from 1957 to 1987 as a Senior Associate Engineer building mainframe computers and designing patented system components. He helped design the first computer hard drives. Jim was the recipient of several IBM Achievement awards based on 3 patents he worked on. He published multiple articles in the IBM Technical Journal and was an IBM Instructor for Air Force Personnel. After retiring from IBM, Jim worked for a few years at Fujitsu and Instellistore. Jim's zest for living an active life can best be summed up by the water skiers' call to "Hit it!" He was an avid water skier, spending many a summer day at the Boulder Reservoir skiing with his children. Jim enjoyed the camaraderie and many long conversations with his fellow Elks and IBMers. He was adept at anything electrical or mechanical and used his skills to fix TVs, computers and cars as well as design and build a garage, his boat that he named “Flip” and many other items. He enjoyed artistic pursuits such as painting and playing the piano, and in the 1950’s was leader of the jazz band, The Stardusters. He enjoyed computer programming and “debugging” programs. For fun, he liked to read technical manuals. In retirement, he travelled with Phyllis on the RV circuit in their 5th wheel. Jim is survived by his wife Phyllis; children James Waddell of Boulder, Joseph (Frances) Waddell of Sandia Park, NM, John Waddell of Thornton, Amanda (Brian) Michael of Littleton, and Patrick Waddell of Oakley, CA; seven grandchildren, Mandi, Michael, Justin (Christina), Ariana, Nathaniel, Nicholas, and Jessica (Rafael) and great grandchildren Aubrey, Dynah and Sofia. Contributions: Parkinson Association of the Rockies, 1325 S Colorado Blvd #204, Denver, CO 80222.
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Service Schedule

Past Services

Mass of Christian Burial

Friday, January 27, 2017

Starts at 10:00 am (Mountain time)

Sacred Heart of Jesus Catholic Church

2312 14th Street, Boulder, CO 80304

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