Philip Marshall James, 83, of North Haven, CT passed over peacefully in his sleep at home on October 5, 2017. Predeceased by the love of his life of 52 years Cynthia James. Philip was born in the seaside town of Cohasset, Massachusetts on September 15, 1934 to the late Robert B. and Hazel (Farrar) James. Growing up in Cohasset as a young boy, his love for Boston sports’ teams and hockey took root; living next to the town’s firehouse likewise started Phil’s life of volunteerism and public service. He attended Cohasset schools before attending Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire; graduating Class of 1956 and having a successful Ivy League hockey career. Phil moved to Wethersfield, CT in the late 50’s to join SNET while being a member of the Air National Guard for 6 years. In Wethersfield, Phil reconnected with his fire service childhood by joining the Wethersfield Volunteer Fire Department. When SNET moved Phil and his new wife to North Haven in 1964, he quickly signed on with North Haven’s Northeast Volunteer Fire Co. 4. Phil rose to the rank of Captain and Company Commanding Officer; protecting the life and property of North Haven residents for 32 years. Phil remains the longest-serving Captain in North Haven’s volunteer fire service history. He was an active 50 plus member of the North Haven Congregational Church. and participated in many town meetings on topics from Little League, and the Land Trust to emergency services. After retiring from SNET, he continued his community service by sitting on a retiree board allocating grants to New Haven area non-profits. He and his wife enjoyed traveling with friends, attending college athletic events throughout New England, as well as tending his vegetable and flower gardens, and raising two children. Father to Brian James of San Francisco, CA and Carla (Mike) Hill of Needham, Massachusetts. Brother to Marcia (Richard) Carthaus of Edina, Minnesota and Naples, Florida; and brother- in- law to Charles (Karleen) Gedney, Uncle to Kimberly Gedney, Kellie (Stephen) Panteleakous, and Paul (Holly) Gedney.
Visiting hours will be 3 to 7 p.m. on Friday, October 13, 2017 at the North Haven Funeral Home, 36 Washington Avenue, North Haven, CT. The North Haven Fire Department providing an honor guard. Phil will be laid to rest Saturday, October 14, 2017. He will be carried on his “Final Call” by North Haven Fire Department’s Engine #5, the same engine company he commanded for 32 years. Services will be at 10 am, Saturday, October 14, 2017 at The North Haven Congregational Church, 28 Church Street, North Haven, CT. Burial to follow at Center Cemetery, Elm Street, North Haven, CT. In lieu of flowers, Memorial Contributions may be made to The North Haven Congregational Church, 28 Church Street, North Haven, Connecticut 06473 and The Northeast Volunteer Fire Association, 366 Washington Avenue, North Haven, Connecticut 06473.