James Garland Hill of Kingston, Massachusetts passed away on June 3, 2019 at the age of 97. He went by his middle name of Garland. Garland was born in Spartanburg, South Carolina in 1922; but grew up in central North Carolina around High Point. He developed an avid interest in aviation having watched Charles Lindbergh practice take-offs and landings in a field near his home in North Carolina. Mr. Hill enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1942 and received the Presidential Air Medal award with four additional gold stars for meritorious service in over 80 air combat missions in WWII in the Pacific. He received the Five Star Asiatic-Pacific Area Ribbon, Three Stars on the Aircrew Insignia, the American Area Ribbon, and the Good Conduct Medal. He served aboard the aircraft carriers USS Hancock, USS Intrepid, and USS Enterprise.
After serving in the Navy during WWII, Garland separated honorably from the service and went to college. He graduated from High Point College with his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and taught school for a number of years. During that time, he met his former wife, Betty Sue Hill (Collins) of Robbinsville, NC. Disenchanted with teaching, Garland re-enlisted in the Naval Air Reserve in Jacksonville, FL. He served at Naval Air Stations in Jacksonville, FL; Marietta, GA; Los Alamitos, CA; and South Weymouth, MA. Garland retired after over 20 years of active military service. During retirement, Mr. Hill performed as a sailor on the Mayflower replica in Plymouth Harbor, MA. He really enjoyed entertaining and educating the visitors to the life and habits of the “deck hands” on ships of those early explorers.
Garland was predeceased by his daughter Dana Sue Zeiher (Hill) and is survived by his son, James Russell Hill; four grandchildren (Tanya Sue Zeiher, Jaclyn Renee Zeiher, Anna Natasha Hill, and James Austin Hill); and one great-granddaughter, Briana Renee Paige.
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to the memorial service for Garland on Friday, June 21, 2019 at 10am in the Unitarian Universalist Church of Weymouth located at 83 Sea St. N. Weymouth, MA. Light refreshments will follow the memorial service. The interment ceremony and honors will take place at Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, MA at 2pm the same day.