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JAMES WILLARD "POPPOP" HAYDEN


JAMES WILLARD HAYDEN "POPPOP"
April 14, 1923 - March 11, 2013

Jim Hayden, World War II veteran, poet, clown, softball player and western lover, died peacefully in his home, surrounded by his biggest fans.
Jim was born and raised in Oroville, WA until he joined the U.S Navy in 1943. For 3 years he proudly served as a Radar Man third class aboard the U.S.S. New Mexico, where he gathered enough stories to last a lifetime.
While on leave in the town of Boston, MA he met and married the love of his life, Virginia A. Hoyt.
He worked as a Research Engineer for Hughes Research Lab. After retirement, they set off to see the world. One of his favorite stops was Ireland where he could enjoy a good beer and a bad joke.
Jim was born for retirement. From refereeing his grandchildren's soccer games to playing senior softball well into his eighties, nothing could slow Jim down. Jim had a lifelong love affair with tools, patriotism, playing horseshoes, gardening, garage sales, telling jokes, and his Irish heritage. An avid walker, Jim spent his later years hiking the Salmon Creek Trail with a pocket full of dog treats and a bag full of bird seed. Like that trail, Jim used every step in his life to bring smiles to others, no matter how small.
Jim is survived by his beautiful wife, Virginia A. Hayden; his children, Janice Lockhart, James Hayden Jr., Cheryl Hayden; Kevin Hayden and Thomas Hayden; a sister, Dee Little; and 13 grandchildren; and 18 great-grandchildren, who will miss him daily.
It is with a heavy heart that we say goodbye to our father and Poppop. We have lost our shining light and our rainbow through the rain. The birds have lost their free meals and the local garage sales have lost a loyal customer.
There will be a Celebration of Life, Mon., March 18th at 2:00 at Northwood Park Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be to the DAV fund.
So let us smile at the sky,
For Poppop's with the Creator,
In our hearts you'll stay forever,
We'll see you later, alligator…
Please sign his guest book at: www.columbian.com/obits.

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Published in The Columbian on Mar. 15, 2013
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