LAPPIN, James B., Sr., Longtime resident of Rumford, RI, passed peacefully November 29, 2020 at age 92. He leaves his loving family– children: Mary Lappin Conley of Providence, RI, Martha Soderlund and her husband Bruce of Riverside, RI, James B. Lappin, Jr. of Rumford, RI, Thomas Lappin and his wife Amy of Meriden, NH; his longtime companion, Judy Smith of Riverside, RI, along with grandchildren, Andrew, Zachary, Kyle, Sadie, and Sam; and great-grandchildren, Alistair, McKenzie, and Olivia. He was predeceased by his wife Catherine (Beauregard) Lappin; his parents John and Sarah (Boyd) Lappin; and his siblings John Lappin and Mary L. Marble.
Jim was born in 1928 in Pawtucket, RI. After high school, he served in the U.S. Navy. Upon his return home, he attended the University of Rhode Island graduating with a degree in Agriculture and married the love of his life, Catherine (Kay) Beauregard. After a brief journey to Indiana, the two settled in Rumford, RI raising their four children in a home with an abundance of love. Jim and Kay enjoyed taking the family on yearly summer vacations around New England with a particular fondness for Prudence Island and Cape Cod. They were married for 35 years before her death in 1989. Jim soon retired after a 30 year career as the Superintendent of Parks for the City of East Providence, RI. Never one to sit still, he spent his retirement years traveling, gardening, spending time with his grandchildren, and working around his house and the homes of family members. There was nothing that Jim couldn’t build or fix.
Well known for his love of bringing people together, family, friends, and neighbors all fondly remember time spent with him. JIm commanded an audience wherever he went. He demonstrated how to live through good times and bad with a vibrant spirit and well honed wit. Family celebrations around his dining room table could extend for hours as the stories and laughter flowed. Everyone was welcome at his house and you were encouraged to walk right in and bring friends along. Countless children learned to swim at Papa Jim’s swimming pool and he was delighted when some returned years later with their own kids. His zest for life remains in the hearts and memories of many.
There will be a private burial in the Rumford Cemetery with a celebration of Jim’s life to be held in the summer. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in memory of James B. Lappin, Sr. to, Hope & Faith Drive, 18 Intervale Avenue, East Providence, RI 02914.