Cover photo for James "Jim" Marett's Obituary
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1938 James "Jim" 2021

James "Jim" Marett

December 6, 1938 — August 8, 2021

On August 8, 2021. James (Jim) Marett passed away peacefully on his way to church. He loved. He served. He soared. Jim was born in San Diego, California on December 6, 1938, into a Navy family. He lived many places prior to 1955 when his father retired in Long Beach, California. He attended Long Beach Wilson High School where he met his wife, Joan Ayers. Jim and Joan were married in 1960 and had three children together. He LOVED HIS GOD, HIS FAMILY, HIS FRIENDS AND HIS DOGS! Following high school, Jim attended college at, and graduated from the University of California at Berkeley. While at CAL he was a member of the National Champion water polo team and during his 5th year at CAL he coached the freshman water polo team and the freshman swimming team. Later he eared a Master's Degree and a Ph.D from Arizona State University and took a position at Northern Illinois University as a professor in the Department of Physical Education. HE SERVED. He entered the Air Force following college in 1963 and was awarded his pilot's silver wings in 1964. Starting in 1965, Jim spent 2 1/2 years flying missions in Vietnam as the pilot of a C-130 aircraft. He was then assigned to the Air Force Academy for four years to start their very successful intercollegiate water polo team. In addition to coaching the water polo team, he helped with the AF swim team and youth swim teams in the area. He spent many weekends flying AF Academy teams (including football) to meets and games around the United States. Throughout his life, Jim has served others, by volunteering with youth soccer and swim teams, church boards and activities, our local hospital, and at Fool Hollow State Park. He and Joan were awarded the volunteer couple of the year in 2017 by Arizona Parks & Trails. Jim was an educator. For four years, in addition to coaching, he taught classes in the physical education department at the Air Force Academy. After his 11 years of active duty in the Air Force, and obtaining his Master's and Ph.D degrees, he was a professor in the science areas of physical education and was the Asst. Director of the University Honors Program and Asst. Chair of the Dept. of Physical Education at Northern Illinois University. Upon retirement in 1999, Jim said he had always wanted to be a Medic, so he went through EMT and EMT-I training and became a member of the Mancos Hos Company in Mancos, Colorado, making many, many ambulance calls and working many wildland and structural fires. This led to Jim and his wife, Joan, volunteering and being accepted on the Rocky Mountain Type 1 and Type 2 Incident Management Teams. They worked wildland fires (and hurricanes) for a combined total of 34 years. Jim is survived by his wife of 61 years, Joan Ayers Marett (Lakeside, AZ), two daughters, Jody Moses (Newport Beach, CA) and Jill Gagnon (Chicago, IL), a son, Jon Marett (Riverside, CA), five grandchildren: Heather Munoz (Tustin, CA), Erin Gray (London, England), Braxton Gagnon (Chicago, IL), Brandi Gagnon (Chicago, IL), and Jacey Gagnon (Chicago, IL), and two great-grandsons, Julian and Jaxon Munoz (Tustin, CA). Jim is also survived by two sisters: Jean Westbrook (Fairfax, VA) and Carol Murray (Sheldon, WA). HE SOARED - At everything he did, be it husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, AF officer and pilot, church member, coach, educator, medic, firefighter, and volunteer, Jim gave of his time and talents. He will always be loved and missed. An Honor Guard Service and burial was held on September 10th at Mira Mar National Cemetery in San Diego, California . A Memorial Service will be held October 2nd at 10:00 a.m. at The Church of Our Saviour in Lakeside, AZ. In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the Wildland Fire Foundation in Boise, Idaho.
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Saturday, October 2, 2021

Starts at 10:00 am (Mountain (no DST) time)

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