John Graye |

John Graye

Longtime Aspen resident John Graye, “JG,” died peacefully in his home Sunday, Jan. 27.

John was born June 24, 1939, and grew up in Southern California, the son of Margaret and John Graye Sr.

John was a resident of Aspen since the early 1970s. Before coming to Aspen, John attended Wilson High School in Long Beach, Calif., and went on to graduate from the Univer­sity of Southern California. While liv­ing in California, JG became an accomplished surfer. He made a name for himself shaping surfboards. Just this year, JG was inducted into the Huntington Beach California Walk of Fame.

While in Aspen, JG became an avid outdoors man. He enjoyed downhill and nordic skiing.

During the summer moths, JG loved running rivers all over the United States in his custom designed and self­built canoe, the “Solito,” manufac­tured by Evergreen. John was an accomplished craftsman as well.

John is survived by the love of his life, Sally, and by his many friends and sports enthusiasts who shared his outdoor passions, in addition to first cousins: J. Bixby Smith (Peggy) of Carlsbad, Calif.; Deborah Smith McManigal (Craig) of Riverside, Calif.; Betsy Little Bolding of Tucson, Ariz., and Lettie Little Zulfer ( John) of Flagstaff, Ariz.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in John Graye’s name to: The American Canoe Association, 7432 Alban Station Blvd., Suite B-232, Springfield, VA, 22150, or online at

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