David Griggs

Obituary of David Harry Griggs

David Harry Griggs (76), walked into the arms of Jesus on July 26, 2023. He breathed his last breath untroubled, with his wife of 53 years at his side.

Born to Bruce and Georgia Griggs, on January 16, 1947, Dave was the eldest of six children. He is survived by his wife Marcia, their two sons, seven grandchildren, and four great-grandchildren. First son Travis and his wife Shannon share daughters Hannah, Rachel, Morgan, Hannah Stuhr, and Haylie, as well as four great-grand-children: Brynlee, Trey, Lennox, and Chandler. Second son Scott and his wife Tae-Ja have two sons, Damian and Jacob. Dave is also survived by his four living siblings: Vicki Griggs, Jorjean Henson, Janice Vasquez, and Gary Griggs. He was preceded in death by his parents and his brother James Griggs.

Dave met the love of his life Marcia, then a dental assistant, in July of 1970 on a blind date--which allegedly led to an illegal teeth cleaning. They married four months later, and early married life included travel for work, and many Jeep club trips. He received the infamous Brush Busters “roll over” trophy, after rolling his Jeep twice offroad, and once on a freeway. Their son Travis was a year old when the three of them moved to the Hawaiian island of Oahu, where Scott was born.

Always a natural leader, Dave carried responsibility with grace--with his siblings growing up, his wife and sons at home, and his church family. Professionally Dave was something of a pioneer in the computer industry, seeking out and learning new technologies, advocating for technology innovations before the House of Representatives in Washington, D.C., and leading various projects and work teams.

Dave lived most of his life in Oregon, Hawaii, and California. Despite being a non-native of Hawaii, a "Haole" as they say, he befriended a native speaker and learned to speak fluent Pidgin and fell in love with Hawaiian culture, especially slack key guitar. Even after moving back to the mainland, the “Aloha Spirit” remained a key part of who he was.

Dave was known for his commitment to Jesus Christ, but it really took a volcano erupting for God to get Dave's attention. In 1980, Mount St. Helens covered the Pacific Northwest in ash, negatively impacting Dave and Marcia’s paint and wallpaper store. Dave realized through this trial how crucial a relationship with Jesus is, and took a new path in life. Led by the Holy Spirit, Dave lived a life of sharing God's love with coworkers, family, and friends, with neighbors and the church.

When leaving church one Sunday, Dave was particularly frustrated about something. A friend chased him down in the parking lot, urging: "Don't change churches, change! Then change your church." He took the admonition seriously and served in various roles. Among those, he was most passionate about the role of Sunday School teacher, serving both children and adults. He spent hours, sometimes days, poring over collections of scriptures called lectionaries and writing responses to share, which he titled Common Threads. Dave had a natural sense of humor and wrote his thoughts and stories well.

Dave learned computer skills in the U.S. Air Force during the Vietnam era, and when his service ended, he joined Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC) in 1968, where he worked for over 25 years in sales and service roles. He later joined a local health insurance company, serving in a joint role of IT and Facilities Manager with coworkers he loved dearly. "This team is my Camelot," as he described them.

Dave’s passions included faith, community, music, and being outdoors. He traveled to dozens of countries, including Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Costa Rica, Caribbean Islands, Mexico, and Lebanon.

His love for music embraced a wide range. From the Sixties’ rock and folk, he favored the Bee Gees, The Beatles, The Mamas and the Papas, Elvis Presley. Dave intuitively choose Simon and Garfunkel’s “Bridge Over Troubled Water” as their relationship song, a seemingly prophetic choice in hindsight. He loved hymns and worship music: “It Is Well with My Soul,” “The Old Rugged Cross,” the Newsboys, and Nicole C. Mullins. Mozart, Beethoven, and George Frederic Handel’s “Hallelujah Chorus” led his favorites in classical music. In country, he loved Willie Nelson, Merle Haggard, and Johnny Cash. Hawaiian artists Keola and Kapono Beamer, Israel Kamakawiwo’ole, and Gabby Pahinui brought him great joy.

During his six-year battle with Alzheimer’s disease, he never lost his sense of humor or his love for music. He fought with determination, supported by loving relationships with many friends and family members. Those who knew Dave well saw the change that came from a life of personal growth and an active relationship with Jesus. Dave offered an insight that remains for us a worthy legacy. He declared, “I no longer find a need to point out failures of others. Love is my only goal!”

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Celebration of Life Service

11:00 am
Saturday, October 28, 2023
New Hope Church
10603 SE Henderson St.
Portland, Oregon, United States
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