Griffin, James Downs age 23 suddenly, devoted son of John J. and Margaret (nee Downs) Griffin, cherished brother of Meg (Greg) Gardner and John C. Griffin, loving grandson of Kathleen (the late John) Downs and the late Sarah and the late Charles Griffin, fond nephew of many aunts and uncles, and favorite of 45 first cousins. Jimmy truly embraced family and was the light of our lives. From a young age Jimmy's sparkling blue eyes and warm smile captivated many. He simply was a joy to be around. A dedicated athlete and ultimate competitor, Jimmy thrived on the basketball court. A proud three year starter of the Marist High School basketball team, Jimmy lead his team to a 50-9 record his last two seasons. He finished his high school career as the second all-time assist leader in Marist history. A quiet, yet confident leader on the court, Jimmy was most proud of the close friendships he made with his Marist teammates and classmates. He was loved by all. His hard work and perseverance paid off and he was awarded a full division 1 basketball scholarship to Samford University in Birmingham, AL. He was welcomed at Samford with open arms and forged great friendships with his teammates. Jimmy touched many lives and his loss will be deeply felt by all who knew him. Visitation Sunday, 3:00 to 9:00 p.m. and Monday, 9:00 a.m. until the time of Mass 10:00 a.m. at St. Bede the Venerable Church, 8200 S. Kostner, Chicago. Interment Holy Sepulchre Cemetery. A scholarship fund has been established in Jimmy's name to benefit the Marist High School basketball program, donations may be sent to Coach Gene Nolan c/o Marist High School, 4200 W. 115th St., Chicago IL 60655. Arrangements by Robert J. Sheehy & Sons Funeral Home. www.sheehyfh.com 708-857-7878 773-582-4400
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Published in Chicago Sun-Times on Sept. 11, 2009