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Blount & Curry Funeral Home-Carrollwood

3207 W Bearss Ave, Tampa, FL

OBITUARY

James Finn LeClaire

19 July, 19348 February, 2020
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James Finn LeClaire Sr, 85, of Land O Lakes FL, Englewood FL, and Jewett City CT, passed away on Saturday, February 8, 2020 in Lutz, FL.

Jim was born in Norwich, CT to Alice and Eudor LeClaire on July 19, 1934. He went to school at Griswold High in Jewett City, CT. He married Mavis Faye Vause on December 26, 1959 in Tallahassee, FL. He graduated from both University of Connecticut (BA) and Florida State University (MA). He worked as a teacher, a coach and an athletics director in Griswold High School for 35 years. As coach at Griswold High School, Jim led the Wolverines to multiple state titles in baseball; conference championships in football; basketball league titles; and numerous other championships. Jim took great pride in watching the young men and women of Griswold High School develop into responsible adults that have contributed so much to the world.

Jim was a veteran and served in the US Army and US Army Reserve for 27 years. He retired as a full colonel.

For over 50 years, Jim was involved with the Knights of Columbus in Councils in both CT and FL where he attained the highest level as a Fourth Degree in the Order.

Jim truly led a life of service to his family, his faith, his country, his hometown and his beloved Griswold High.

Jim is preceded in death by his beloved wife of 57 years, Faye.

Jim is survived by his daughters, Lynne LeClaire (spouse Donald Dumaine) and Kathleen LeClaire (spouse Barbara Langford); sons, James LeClaire Jr (spouse Vicki Knox LeClaire) and William LeClaire (spouse Sally Nowakowski LeClaire); brother, Paul LeClaire; grandsons, Ethan Dumaine, Jared LeClaire, Jacob LeClaire; granddaughters, Danielle Dumaine and Madison LeClaire; and great granddaughter Amelia Dumaine.

Funeral services will be held at 10:30 am on Saturday, February 29, 2020, in Land O Lakes, FL with Father Xavy of Our Lady of the Rosary officiating. Interment will follow on March 16, 2020 at 1:00pm at the Sarasota National Cemetery in Sarasota FL. Arrangements are by Blount and Curry Funeral Home, Carrollwood.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be given to the Jewett City CT Little League. Donations can be mailed by check to Jewett City Little League, PO Box 204 Jewett City, CT 06351, or online at the link below. https://paypal.me/CoachLeClaireJCLL?locale.x=en_US

Please reference Coach LeClaire memorial.

The family of Jim wishes to extend our sincere thanks for the countless well wishes, prayers, and condolences from Jim's family, friends, students and communities.

Services

  • Funeral Mass Saturday, 29 February , 2020
  • Graveside Service Monday, 16 March , 2020

Memories

James Finn LeClaire

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Stan Kobelski

February 17, 2020

My sympathies to the Leclair family. Fond memories of coach , he was a legend in Jewett City. He gave so much back to the youth in town. During the summer I remember the coach teaching us how to swim in back of the French club. I’m sure he’s touched so many lives. Rip coach.

Phil Anctil

February 16, 2020

Coach LeClaire taught me every aspect that made me a good player as well as a Coach at Griswold High School for more than 40 years. His legacy will always be at Griswold High School through me.
My deepest sympathy to all his family and friends.

Coach Phil Anctil
Griswold High School

Carol Elnicki

February 15, 2020

Coach Leclaire was such a nice man. He was always encouraging. During the various sports seasons he treated the players with respect. He was always a gentleman and good role model, even in the heat of battle during a game.

The world is a better place because Coach Leclaire was in it. Condolences to his family and friends.

Carol (Faust) Elnicki. GHS 1966.

Mark and Deirdre (McLaughlin) Mercier

February 15, 2020

We are so sorry to hear of the passing of your beloved father and grandfather. Coach LeClaire was a gift to the youth of Jewett City. He touched the lives of countless people throughout his life. Jim and Faye were dear friends of my parents’, Hugh (“Mac”) and Dorris McLaughlin. Mr. LeClaire left his mark in a town that will forever know him fondly as “Coach”. DeeDee and Mark Mercier

James Elnicki

February 15, 2020

I remember him as Coach, when I went through high school at Griswold. He will remain a legend in our small town with still a small school. His service to our community and our Nation Did Not Ever Go Unnoticed! Much Respect for a very Respectable and beyond Honorable Man.

Ronald Dabkowski

February 14, 2020

I haven't known Jim for a long time, but enjoyed conversations with him. It was evident what a caring person he was. Rest in peace.

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