James A. Gammon
January 30, 1934 - August 3, 2011
Tribute and Remembrances
Jim Gammon was born in Keokuk, Iowa, in January of 1934. His childhood was full of troublemaking shenanigans, boys-only club houses, football, basketball, underage driving and the like. While attending the University of Notre Dame, he went to a party with some hometown friends and met Joanne Mott. Later that evening, he declared he'd met the woman he would marry. And, after convincing her to end her current engagement to another man, he did just that on August 31, 1957.
Moving to Washington, D.C., to attend Georgetown Law School, Jim and Joanne set up an apartment where, 10 months later, they welcomed Dan, the first of five children. Tom, Matt, Kelly and Tim quickly followed, and eventually, they moved to Chevy Chase, Maryland. All were welcomed into their homes with love and laughter and music. Jim took a special interest in many people and liked nothing better than a game of basketball in the driveway, a work-out in the basement, or a run through the neighborhood to get to know someone. As a consequence, his friends and admirers were diverse and wide-spread.
But his anchor and his passion were his family. His commitment to his wife was always first and foremost. 'Anything for Jo,' was his credo. But, really, it was 'anything for everyone in the family.' In fact, to his children, in-laws and grandchildren, he simply told one and all that they were the best, that they had 'the tickets;' and, that he was a little embarrassed for the other kids who had to compete/perform against them. He made clear to the whole family his certainty that all of them would accomplish great things.
He will be missed because his presence was so large, but also, because his support was so constant. We say goodbye to a Rock, a Legend. With his wife Joanne at his side for 54 years, Jim built a legacy of love, laughter and great times. We will never again have his presence, but we can vow to keep it alive, carry forward his legacy of love and support in our own families, and know that he will continue to cheer us on from above.