Denise Dahn Griffith

February 21, 1952August 11, 2019

After a brave and determined fight against ALS, Denise Dahn Griffith, 67, passed away in the comfort of her home and surrounded by her family on Sunday afternoon, August 11, 2019. Born on February 21, 1952 in Benton Harbor, Michigan; she was one of five children to Marie Arth Dahn, of St. Joseph, MI and the late Ralph Leon Dahn and wife of the late Craig Charles Griffith.

Denise graduated from Lake Michigan Catholic High School in St. Joseph, Michigan. She received a Bachelor of Science Degree from Central Michigan University, and went onto attain her Masters of Science in Clinical Nutrition from University of Kentucky. Denise retired from the Veteran’s Health Administration in January of this year, and prior to that enjoyed a 12-year career at SAS. She worked as a dietary clinician in a hospital setting, cardiac rehab, and dialysis clinic.

Above all else, Denise was passionate about her family. She was a dedicated wife, mother, grandmother, sister, friend, and neighbor. She exuded a quiet strength, always observant, quick witted, and had a wonderful sense of humor. She was a Jazzercise instructor for 25 years and had a passion for health and fitness. Denise was an avid reader and loved her garden that Griff and she planted. She spent her evenings listening to nature and watching the birds. She was an animal lover to her core, and Griff often joked, “if you ever were reincarnated, may you come back as Denise’s dog.” Her beloved dogs over the years, Darby and Chewy, were constant companions by her side through life’s many chapters. It is hard to put a wonderful woman like Denise into words. To know her was to love her.

Including her mother, Denise is survived by her two children: Allison Nelson and husband Zachary, of Wake Forest and Craig Griffith, Jr. and wife Leslie, of the DC metro area; three grandchildren: Tanner, Brayden and Alexis Nelson; four siblings: Mark and Karen Dahn, of St. Joseph, MI, Suzanne and Richard “Tex” Burrows, of Temple, TX, Patrice Schroeder, of St. Joseph, MI, Jeanette O’Brien, of Bolingbrook, IL; and several nieces and nephews and their families. She is also survived by her grand-dogs: Zoe and Cooper; and by her beloved dog: Darby who held such an incredible place in her heart.

The family would like to give special appreciation to the support given to Denise and the family from Transitions LifeCare in Raleigh and to all the wonderful nurses who dedicate their careers to the service of others.

A celebration of her life will be held at a later time in Michigan. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in her memory to the ALS Association or to Saving Grace Animal Rescue in Wake Forest.

If you would like to leave a message of condolence or a favorite memory for the family, you may do so below within "add a memory".


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Denise Dahn Griffith

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Ruth Meadows

August 20, 2019

Denise and I served on the homeowner's board together as well as attending the same gym.
She was always very supportive and positive in matters of health challenges, and she was brave and creative in finding solutions to the problems that arose while we served on the board.

I will always remember her positive spirit and bright smile. She touched my life and the lives of people around her in a very positive way.

Debbie Moore

August 19, 2019

As a fellow diabetes educator and friend, I knew and loved working with Denise. She was a giving and caring individual, setting examples for others. Denise was an amazing, loving person. My deepest sympathies to the family.

Debbie Watkins

August 18, 2019

I worked with Denise at the Diabetes Treatment Center at what was then Raleigh Community Hospital. She had such a beautiful countenance and loving spirit. Her patients loved her and learned from her and she won over even the most difficult physicians. Trust me, that wasn’t easy. I’m so sorry to get this prayers are with your family.

Melissa Majeroni

August 17, 2019

Saddened to hear this news today. Denise was a regular in our Tuesday night BodyPump classes for a long time. She was such a beautiful woman. Kind, caring, and encouraging. She will be missed. Rest in peace beautiful friend.

My sincere condolences to her friends and family.

Karen Eich

August 17, 2019

My thoughts and prayers are with the family . So sorry for your loss.

Joanne Ward

August 17, 2019

Denise was a member at my gym and she attended my cycle class. She loved class and was so positive and encouraging to me as the new instructor a few years ago. When she started developing symptoms before her diagnosis, we should share concerns and information (me, about my father who had similar symptoms). When she shared her diagnosis with me, we both cried. I've missed her so much since she's been away from the gym. When I saw her a few weeks ago, she looked beautiful and so strong despite everything she was going through. I still look at "her" bike every week in class and think about her. She is missed by all of us. My deepest condolences to her family and her neighbor Elizabeth who too such wonderful care of her and loved her so well.

Don Phelan

August 17, 2019

Repose en paix, Denise. You, Deb, and me walking to French class left very fond memories. You were loved by your classmates and family. Rest In Peace, Denise.

Sara Mobley

August 17, 2019

My favorite days and nights in high school were spent at Griff and Denise’s house. They were the parents we wanted to be around. All the pancake and waffle breakfasts, jumping on the trampoline, laying out on the back deck, pre-prom pictures in their beautiful yard, sleepovers, the giant dogs, and the CANDY DRAWER! The candy drawer was the funniest to us, with her being a dietitian. I already missed them both, and even more now. If I could pick 2 people that deserved to live forever, it would be Griff and Denise. I’ll just think of them as having shared all the love and joy that they were put here to do and God wanted them back for himself! All my love to the family!

Kristin Harris

August 17, 2019

Allison and Family,
I am so sorry for the loss of your mom. I know she is no longer suffering and thank God for that. The grace you showed in taking care of her was a blessing and certainly showed Christ’s love. I love you and will continue to keep you in my prayers.

Traci Rafferty

August 17, 2019

Allison, Zach, and family,

Our hearts and prayers go out to you. I know helping and loving a parent through a disease is the most difficult thing you can do. Your loss is great, she was a wonderful lady.

With our love and in grief,
Traci and Chris Rafferty