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.