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James Sutton, Jr.

Obituary of James Clayton Sutton, Jr.

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Obituary of James Clayton Sutton, Jr. James Clayton Sutton, Jr., the son of James Clayton and Rachel Karn Sutton, was born on June 19, 1921, in Arco, ID. He passed away on September 24, 2023, in Glendale, CA at the age of 102. He attended schools in California, graduating from Corona High School. In 1938, Jim was in the first NROTC class at UCLA, majoring in engineering and physics. His love of flying and training to be a pilot began in the skies over the greater Los Angeles area. Jim was married to his lovely bride, Anita Campbell, for 73 years. Anita passed away in 2018. Jim is survived by four children: Christine (Arnie) Preheim, Lake View Terrace; Judy (Bob) Kenagy, Idaho; Jim III, Palm Desert; and Joyce Wainwright, Colorado; six grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. In addition to Anita, one great grandchild, Mark Daniel Alvord and Jim’s brother Edmund “Ted” Sutton pre-deceased him. In 1963, Commander Sutton retired from the US Navy after 22 years of serving many tours of duty throughout the world. He began as a Navy aviator serving in World War II and also served in the Armed Forces Special Weapons Project, a successor of the Manhattan Project. Jim was Officer in Charge of a Special Weapons Assembly Team while deployed on USS Midway. Later, he was Senior Staff Officer of a Destroyer Squadron and served as president of the Court Martial Board in Norfolk, VA. Jim and his family lived in Honolulu for two years attached to the Service Force, Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor. His final tour of duty was with the National Military Command System Support Center at the Pentagon in Washington, D.C. During the Cuban Missile Crisis, Jim was at the Alternate Joint Command Center involved in classified activity. Jim was employed by Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena for 13 years. He was assigned as an administrator for the Space Flight Operations Facility, participating in the Ranger, Mariner and Surveyor projects. He also worked briefly as a project administrator for the Ralph M. Parsons Company in Pasadena. Jim was a family man, taking his children on vacations and helping them adjust to new schools and new states during the Navy years. Later, he visited his children and grandchildren all over the country. Duty, responsibility, hard work, love of country, ethical behavior as well as biblical ideals were passed on to his family members. Jim and Anita spent many vacations in their travel trailer and 5th wheel. Jim became a charter member of the Association of Naval Aviation and helped form the San Fernando Valley (Two-Block Fox) Squadron. Other hobbies included skeet shooting, ham radio and art & history of the Old West. Jim had an excellent memory about the events and details of his early life and of the history of his times. Through his parents’ influence, Jim believed in Jesus Christ for eternal life at a young age. He served as a teacher and deacon at many churches over time and served as a board member for several Christian organizations. Jim was a member of Grace Community Church, Sun Valley at the time of his death. A few days before his death he was asked if he was ready to go to heaven. He clearly answered, “Yes!” He is now in the presence of His Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. A private graveside service is planned.
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James Sutton, Jr.

In Loving Memory

James Sutton, Jr.

1921 - 2023

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