James Waggle

James Waggle

Tuesday, September 8th, 1942 Sunday, October 6th, 2019

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Obituary for James Paul Waggle

On Sunday, October 6, 2019, James Paul Waggle – loving husband, father, and friend to all who knew him – passed away unexpectedly but peacefully at his home in Mentor, Ohio, at the age of 77.

Jim, as he was probably best known, was born on September 8, 1942. Following his graduation from Cleveland Heights High School, Jim entered the United States Air Force, serving his country with Honor as an Aircraft Loadmaster between the years 1961 and 1965. Later, in 1983, he began working and volunteering at the Mentor Civic Ice Arena, which remained an active and important aspect of his life until the end.

Concurrently, for many years Jim also worked at the Quail Hollow Golf Course, another place near and dear to him. During the course of his career, Jim held many roles and titles, but was most affectionately and accurately known simply as “Coach Wags.” His dedication, dependability, and innate charm made him a local legend, and he will be sorely missed by the community as a whole.

Jim met the love of his life, Donna, in 1968 while skating at the Cleveland Heights Ice Rink, where he first began coaching youth hockey. They married on August 20, 1977, the start of 42 happy years together as husband and wife. During this time, Donna readily grew to adore his knack for talking to anyone, no matter the setting or situation; innate ability to speak louder than anyone else in the room, complete with booming laugh and corny jokes; good natured mischievousness; penchant for chewing on toothpicks; and cocktail of choice, Canadian Club and water.

She less readily appreciated his love of all things football, most specifically his unending, and possibly misplaced, loyalty to the Cleveland Browns; his much better rewarded praise of The Ohio State University and Mentor High School; and his ability to spot stars in the making at high school football games.

In addition to his wife, Donna Waggle (neé Schleicher), Jim is survived by his family: Father of Darlene (Waggle) Mowatt, and stepfather [Daddy Wags] to Robert (Debbie) Brown, Elizabeth Brown (Brad) Scott, and Richard (Lisa) Brown; brother of Robert (Kathy) Waggle, John (Cheri) Waggle, and Sue Janko; Grandfather to McKenna Mowatt and Grandpa Jim to Donna’s four grandchildren: Sarah Scott, Kristin Scott (Tom) Guilmette, and Goodwin and Grant Brown; and uncle [Uncle Jim] to myriad nieces and nephews.

Jim is further survived by his many, many friends who, whether known for days or decades, all mourn his passing.

Due to Jim’s dedication to the ice rink and his place as a fixture in the community, in lieu of flowers, memorial contributions should be made by check to the Coach Wags Mentor Youth Hockey Fund, where a fund is being created in Jim’s memory to help enable future generations of hockey players to learn the sport; further details will be announced as available.

A public celebration of life will take place on Sunday, October 13, 2019, from 1:00 to 4:00pm, at the Mentor Civic Ice Arena, 8600 Munson Rd., Mentor, Ohio, 44060. An open microphone will be provided for those wishing to share a tribute to Jim beginning at 2:00.

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James Paul Waggle, please visit our Heartfelt Sympathies Store.
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Service Details

  • Service

    Sunday, October 13th, 2019 | 1:00pm
    Mentor Civic Arena
    8600 Munson Road
    Mentor, OH
    Get Directions: View Map | Text | Email |
    Sunday, October 13th, 2019

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Bob and Donna Milnes and From his friends with the Quail Hollow CC Turf Dep sent flowers to the family of James Paul Waggle.
Hand delivered by a local florist
Bob and Donna Milnes and From his friends with the Quail Hollow CC Turf Dep sent flowers to the family of James Paul Waggle.
Hand delivered by a local florist

Sue Harte

Jim was such a wonderful friend to everyone he met. We knew each other from when the Mentor Arena first opened and stayed great friends ever since. I will miss you, Jim. A true gentleman and thoughtful person to all your Arena community. God bless you and your family.
Comment | Posted at 05:32pm via Condolence

Bob and Donna Milnes

May you be comforted by the outpouring of love surrounding you. With loving memories of "Wags".
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Memorial Flowers Purchased

Bob and Donna Milnes purchased flowers for the family of James Waggle.
Comment | Posted at 10:18am via Floral Arrangements

Bill Morrow


P.S Say Hi to Diane and tell her we miss her dearly
Comment | Posted at 05:13pm via Condolence

Ray Kennedy

A great guy and a wonderful co-worker. My window to the family and friends.
Comment | Posted at 02:51pm via Condolence

Chad Limon

Wags was always there for players. Young men making their way in life could always find a smile, a nod, a wink of the eye from Wags when they faced a tough defeat. He was a legend at Civic Center and he will he missed by generations of players and parents.
Comment | Posted at 12:38pm via Condolence

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