Jim Wood was born in Kinston, N.C. but spent his childhood years in Concord, MA . He joined the Navy in 1945 at seventeen “to save the world”. Out of the Navy in 1947, he then joined the 11th Airbourne in 1948, completing 60 parachute jumps. Commissioned in 1949,he served 2 tours of Duty in Korea. He loved the military because of its discipline and love for his country. Returning to civilian life, he married his wife, Et in 1954 and graduated in 1959 with an architectural Degree from Cal Poly, San Louis Obispo.
During the next 13 years, he worked for Kaiser Aluminum, designed the Durango Herald building while living there, and then worked for Carrier Air conditioning in El Paso., TX. At the tender age of 42, he joined the Navy again as a Lt Commander in the Civil Engineer Corps.His first tour of duty was on the beautiful island of Coronado, where he taught the Seabees construction skills. With welder in hand , he realized his passion for life, creating welded pieces of steel and bronze.
Every job he took in civilian life or the service, his motto was” ahead of schedule and under budget.” His tours of duty took him to the Micronesian Islands, Diego Garcia and the Naval Post Graduate School. Retiring in 1982, he took a job at MIIS and then devoted his life to art, creating many sculptures that now are in place , donating them all to MIIS, Community Hospital, Monterey Museum of Art,The Weekly, and many private collections in Monterey County and Berlin. He was very prolific. One of his very first sculptures was the flying seagull that flies above Hacienda Carmel.
He loved his classes at MPC with his sculpture buddies and jewelry friends. He will always be remembered as a man with a twinkle in his eye and a wit unsurpassed. The ladies will remember his hug and enduring compliments.
His endless creativity stayed with him until the very end. He will live on for all of us through his timeless sculptures. Fair winds and following seas, Poppa. We will love you forever. You were a GREAT MAN.
Jim is survived by loving wife, Et, daughters Wendy Parker( Steve )Terry Dougherty(Tim), Jody Esquer (Hector) and Debbie Barrows, and our beloved dog, Sophie, 8 grand children, Chelsea, Kendra, Zack, Tobin, Katie, Allie, Keaton and Sophie.
Donations in his memory may be made to: FISHER HOUSE, providing military families housing during a loved ones hospitalization, A Celebration of Jim’s Life will be held on April 10, Rancho Canada, from 2-5.