Date of Birth: December 09, 1925
Date of Death: March 07, 2023
James Lee Irby passed away on March 7th, 2023 at age 97 in his home in Anthem, Arizona. He was surrounded by his loving family and passed peacefully. He was preceded in death by daughter, Carolyn Irby Gray, and was survived by wife Grace Irby, daughters Frances Thompson, Jeannine Geare and Patricia Irby, grandchildren Julie Werth, Jennifer Baldwin, Jim Gray, Dustin Gray, Janelle Devin, great-grandchildren Chelsey Szabo, Shelby Hathaway, Emily Piontkowski, Ethan Baldwin, A. J. Gray, Pierce Gray, Carolyn Lucinda Gray, Logan Anthony Gray, great-great grandchildren, Silas, Esther and Moriah Szabo and brothers Vernon and Russel Irby. Jim was born December 9th, 1925, and grew up in Detroit, Michigan. During World War Il he served in the Pacific Theater as a tail gunner on B29 bombers. He married Grace in 1948 and welcomed their first daughter, Frances Ann, while living in Detroit, Michigan. During the Korean War Jim was recalled into the Air Force and was stationed at Roswell, New Mexico, where their second daughter, Jeannine Louise, was born. After discharge from the service they moved to Phoenix, Arizona, where daughters three and four were born, Carolyn Ann and Patricia Louise. Jim chose a career in the insurance industry and managed the Arizona offices of several Insurance companies while living in Phoenix. The family moved to Flagstaff, Arizona, in 1970 when he became a partner in the McCullough Insurance Agency. He later formed his own agency but stayed affiliated with the McCullough Agency. This association lasted for nineteen years until his retirement. In September of 1994, Jim and Grace moved to Sun City Tucson and were members of Santa Catalina Parish. In September of 2017 they moved to Anthem, AZ, and became members of St. Rose Parish. Jim enjoyed wood working and spent much time remodeling their home and building new cabinets for the various rooms. He was an active member to the Flagstaff Rotary Club for over twenty years, serving as an officer of the club and volunteering for the club’s various projects. A few years before retiring the family purchased a condominium in Kino Bay, Mexico, on the shore of the Sea of Cortez. Jim kept a cabin cruiser there and spent much of his time fishing the deep blue waters.
We are still working out the funeral arrangements. We will keep you posted and update this section as our plans come together.