James Edwin Rife

September 1, 1939March 23, 2023
Obituary of James Edwin Rife
We regretfully announce the passing of James Edwin Rife, 83, of Tacoma, WA, on March 23, 2023. James passed away peacefully with his children at his side. James was born on September 1, 1939, to Glenn Baker and Jean Marguerite (Shade) Rife in Chambersburg, PA. Jim saw education as the path to broader horizons that, for him, would include world travel and an interesting career. He entered the Air Force in 1958 and was trained as a cryptanalyst and was stationed in Okinawa, Japan. Honorably discharged in 1962, he was then employed at the National Security Agency. All of his work required top secret clearances and never did he discuss the nature of his work. He was stationed for 3 years at the Royal Air Force base at Menwith Hill, Yorkshire, England. After leaving NSA, he worked for the U.S. General Accounting Office in Washington, DC and then for the US House of Representatives, as Investigator for the Committee on Government Operations, until his retirement in 1987. Along the way, he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science/Economics from the University of Maryland and a Master’s in Technology of Management. After retirement, he returned to work on Development and Grant writing for Wilson College in Chambersburg and then for Cornish College of the Arts in Seattle, WA. Jim also spent a decade of full-time work researching our family genealogy back to the 1500’s in Wadenswil, Switzerland. Genealogy was his passion. Jim was a consummate computer programmer, researcher and writer his entire life. We are certain he was most proud of his children’s education and the path of his grandchildren into higher education. He was preceded in death by his cherished wife, Judy, in November 2022, after 57 wonderful years of marriage; and, by his brother, Ronald E. Rife, in 2021. He is survived by his beloved children, J. Andrew (Shanna) and Julie R. (Christopher) Mullins, both of Tacoma, WA. He also leaves behind his treasured grandchildren Henry Hough, Jasen Mullins, Halle Rife, Jageli Rife, along with Karmin Mullins, Corinne Mullins, Austin Mullins, and great-grandchildren Aarius, Chase, Calina, Malakai, and Dominic. He will be deeply missed by everyone whose lives he touched. There will be no services, as he desired cremation and a scattering of his ashes in Puget Sound, a favorite place to be together with family. In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in James’ name to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, a favorite charity of both Jim and Judy.

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