James Donald "Don" Wiggins
January 29, 2018

James Donald "Don" Wiggins

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James Donald Wiggins (Don) passed away at his home in Gulf Breeze on January 29, 2018. He was born April 30, 1930 in Opp, AL, to James Farron and Ruby Eiland Wiggins.

He was a proud Marine, having served during the Korean conflict at the infamous Chosin Reservoir. It was a memory that never left him.

He lived much of his early life in Jacksonville, FL, before coming to Pensacola and Gulf Breeze. During the early days of the space program, he worked as a missile recovery diver down range. He loved the sea. At that time, he met his wife Joyce, to whom he was devoted and with whom he recently celebrated 58 years of marriage. Don and Joyce’s lives were enriched by the birth of their beloved daughter Jan in 1966.

He received his BS and MS from the University of Florida and later his doctorate from FSU. When he and his family relocated to this area, Don spent several years as head of the audio-visual department at PJC (now PSC). He went on to work for the federal government (US Navy) as an educational specialist at Saufley Field, retiring in 1995.

He and Joyce spent several years indulging their love of travel. First by motorhome, then by car, they crisscrossed the U.S. and Canada numerous times, only stopping when physical problems intervened. A creative person, Don was a writer of short stories, novels (one published), a painter of the sea and country scenes, and a wood carver who entered some arts and crafts shows but gave away many of his animals, birds, and mermaids to friends and family, who cherish them. He loved reading, good conversation and working in the yard.

Don is survived by his wife and best friend Joyce; his loving and devoted daughter Jan Macauley; her husband John, his “favorite son-in-law”; the light of his life, his grandson Patrick Macauley; and his brother William Wiggins (Dana). He was predeceased by his parents and his sister Mary Goss. There are no words to express how much we will miss him.

At his request, there will be no formal service. A memorial service will be planned at a later time. Anyone who wishes to may make a donation to your favorite charity.


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  2. Natasha Roemer
    pensacola, FL

    I am so sorry for your loss Ms. Joyce.oh how i loved when you and Trouble came in waffle house it was my pleasure to serve you all for the past 7 years. He will be missed by many. My prayers are going up for your family.Come see me when your feeling up to it. Your favorite waffle house waitress Natasha Roemer

  3. Tom & Leta Rae Bosworth
    Pensacola, Fl., FL

    Our deepest condolences. Don was a good neighbor and friend. We pray for comfort for Joyce, Jan, and the entire family.

  4. Tom & Leta Rae Bosworth
    , FL

  5. Bill and Dana Wiggins
    Jacksonville, FL

    Don will be so missed. Those monthly phone conversations between Don & Bill kept us updated on what was going on with the two families. We regret we never got together for that last visit but we will remember the fun times when we did get together---many good memories.
    God Bless!
    Bill says: Don was my brother and I loved him. He kept me smarter as a young boy and although I didn't know it, made me smarter as I grew into a man. Don was my brother and I loved him.

  6. Manette Magera
    Pensacola, FL

    My hope is that the care and love of those around you provide you with comfort and peace to get you through your days ahead. My most sincere condolences on your loss.

  7. , FL

  8. Carl and Linda Palmer
    Huntsville, AL

    We are very sorry to hear that our sweet cousin and friend has passed. Condolences to Joyce, Jan, John, Patrick, and Don's brother and his wife, Bill and Dana Wiggins. We will always miss Don.

  9. Linda and
    , FL

  10. , FL

  11. , FL

  12. Sandy and Frank Young
    Cerrillos, NM

    Joyce, Jan, John, and Patrick . . . I just now read your email, Joyce, and our hearts are broken for you. We have so many good memories of Don, especially of your visits to us here in New Mexico. I was just looking at the photo that you or Don took of us just before you left. Maybe you remember: the American Gothic photo (I AM smiling!). The kokopelli that Don carved for us has always been so special, but now it''s even more so. Just know, all of you, that we are thinking of you and saying lots of prayers as you go through the grief period. The Lord will help you get through! We love you!
    Sandy and Frank

  13. Steve and Ingrid Wiggins
    Pensacola, FL

    We are going to miss you Don. The breakfast and lunches with you and Joyce. You have left us way to soon.

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