James Shardin Woodruff passed away peacefully at his home on November 11, 2022. He was born on April 12, 1943, in Akron, Ohio. Jim was a lifelong resident of Northeast Ohio, and he will be missed by his family and friends.
Jim graduated from Akron Central High School, where he was the president of the Safe Driving Club. After a “brief” stop at the University of Akron, Jim hit the road on his professional career. His professional career involved selling hydraulics, hoses, nuts, bolts, and Spacely Sprockets (just a rumor, but never confirmed).
A chance encounter and six weeks of dating led to a 55-year marriage to the love of his life, Jan. The early years were filled with many water adventures. This included sailing on Lake Erie, spending time at the Sandusky Yacht Club, weekends at “the shack”, walleye fishing and even deep-sea fishing in the Atlantic Ocean. The love of water then switched to his love of the open road. Jim embraced racing. From weekends at Nelsons Ledges, Watkins Glen, Mid-Ohio, and many other courses, he was not only an instructor but participated in the races also (even winning a few). The times spent at the track cultivated so many friendships that meant the world to Jim. After “retiring” from the racing profession, it was time to travel the world. Jim and Jan travelled all over with their friends. From China to South Africa, Vietnam to Alaska to Tanzania, Mexico to Canada, cruises in the Caribbean, jaunts to Hawaii and Wine Country, and many other memorable locations. Summer days were spent with his grandchildren by the pool and teaching them how to drive the gator!
Preceded in death by his parents, Starling “Woody” and Julia Woodruff, he is survived and will be deeply missed by his wife Jan Woodruff of Akron, Ohio, son and daughter-in-law Geoff and Alice Woodruff of Copley, Ohio and grandchildren, Caroline, Julia, and James.
Family and friends are invited to attend a cocktail hour to celebrate Jim’s life at Fairlawn Country Club on Friday, November the 18th, starting at 5 PM. A private service will take place at Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery in Seville, Ohio.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Bath Fire Incorporated., 3864 W. Bath Road, Akron, Ohio 44333.
Services in care of The Billow Funeral Homes & Crematory, Fairlawn Chapel, 85 N Miller Road Akron, OH 44333.