Rick A. “Griff” Griffin, 54, of North Liberty, lifelong resident of the Iowa City area, died Thursday, May 12, 2011, at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics after a courageous battle with cancer.
Funeral services were held May 17 at Gay & Ciha Funeral and Cremation Service in Iowa City. In lieu of flowers a memorial fund has been established in his memory. Online condolences may be sent for his family through the web at www.gayandciha.com .
Rick was born Aug. 8, 1956, in Iowa City, the son of Earl and Phyllis (Kleopfer) Griffin. He attended schools in Iowa City, graduating from City High School in 1975, and the University of Iowa in 1980 with a degree in business. For over 20 years, he worked in customer service for Hawkeye Foods. He also coached many young people over the years in the football and wrestling programs at City High, West High, South East Junior High and Lone Tree Schools. If you knew Rick, and there were few that didn’t, he loved sports, a more avid Hawkeye fan, Cubs fan, and Chicago Bears fan would be hard to find. He was a fierce competitor, towering over many, but those who knew him well knew this man was just a gentle giant. In his wrestling days after he finished pinning you, he was the first to offer his hand to help you up off of the mat! But even move important than any sport was his family, he loved being in love with Patty; his girls were more than just the twinkle in his eye, they were his world, and just last month he became a grandfather, a true gift to this man.
His family includes his long time love, Patty Graves; two daughters, Kelsey Rae Griffin of Phoenix, Ariz.; and Kayla Mae Griffin of Coralville; granddaughter, Laila Mae; his former wife and mother of their children, Marcia Griffin of Coralville; siblings Phyllis L. Patterson (Michael) of Iowa City; and Gary Griffin (Rhonda) of New London; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins; and last but not least, his faithful friend, Gracie!
Rick was preceded in death by his parents.