James Gardner Stratton, Jr., Lt Colonel USA Ret
Jim was born in Annapolis, Maryland, on January 1, 1929, the son of James and Ellen Marie
Stratton. He entered the Navy at 17 and served aboard the USS Bexar during the Bikini atomic
bomb testing. At the age of 23 he met the love of his life, Beverley, they were married 4 months
later. The couple’s future would bring daughter Linda, son Mike and daughter Susan into their
lives and he built his family, who meant everything to him.
Later Jim was commissioned in the Army where he served two one-year tours in Viet Nam,
receiving two Bronze Stars and the Legion of Merit. Among other varied assignments he served
as Logistics Officer aboard a Blue Eagle C-135 flying out of Hickam AFB in Hawaii. The Blue
Eagle teams flew throughout southeast Asia serving as a command post for nuclear weapons in
the event ground based centers were rendered inoperable. He was very proud of his thirty year
career and felt honored to have worked beside so many whom he admired greatly.
After retirement Jim and Bev moved to Sun City West, Arizona, where he enjoyed spending his
days on the golf course. Jim was a sun worshipper and golf supplied plenty of that for him. In
their early days he taught Beverley how to golf and together they logged more golf rounds than
one can count. His happiest days were spent with family and friends. He lived a long and happy
life and left it with the love and respect of all who knew him.
There will be no services. The family knows that those who loved him will think of him with a
smile and a happy thought. He should not be mourned for long, but remembered as a blessing
in the lives of others.
He was predeceased by his sister Doris Virginia Christensen.
Beverley, and their three children Linda Gayle Stratton, James Michael Stratton and Susan
Leigh Stratton Taylor and her husband Don, and grandchildren Kyle Stratton Taylor and Kelli
Brynn Meyers and her husband Zach are missing him greatly but are grateful for his 91 years.
His was a life well lived. He left this world saying repeatedly to all of those within earshot “I am a
lucky guy”. His family thinks they were the lucky ones.