James R. “Jim” Giard, 87, passed away peacefully on Sunday, February 26, 2023. Jim was born in Colrain on March 11, 1935, the son of Antoine and Viola (Bernard) Giard. He was orphaned at 5 and was raised with his Uncle’s family until 16, when he struck out on his own and developed a strong sense of independence and perseverance. He served in the US Marine Corps during the Korean War era, then attended Newman Prep in Boston and Holyoke Junior College while raising 2 children. His plan was to attend UMass for an engineering degree, but instead was encouraged to embrace and pursue his entrepreneurial spirit. He started an aluminum siding business and within a couple of years he purchased and developed land and built custom homes in Hadley (North Gate), as well as Amherst. He secured his Real Estate license and started a Real Estate business in Amherst. Later he owned and operated restaurants and bars including Ye Olde Lantern Inne and The Jolly Bull in Hadley, The Gables in South Deerfield and The Duck Pond in Shelburne. After retirement he pursued another interest and worked for Taylor Davis Landscape. He continued to mow lawns on his own well into his 80s. He always appreciated that running his own business allowed him to pursue his love of golf, and he was blessed to have played 18 holes once a week through last summer. His love of animals led him to purchase a farm in Shelburne where they lived for 40 years, after raising their family in Hadley. He was known for helping friends as well as his sharp skill at cards. He enjoyed meeting his grandchildren for ice cream and taking them for breakfast at a local sugarhouse to celebrate his March birthday, a special tradition his family will continue. Jim was a founding member of the Oak Ridge Detachment #628 of the Marine Corp League and a past member of the Hadley Lions Club and the Greenfield Elks Club. Survivors include his loving wife of 67 years Jane (Haskell), two daughters; Diane Pizzo of Northfield and Sharon (David) Rogalski of Amherst, a son, James (Laura) Giard, Jr of Sterling, four grandchildren; Jerilyn (Jacques) van Heerden (New Zealand), David, Christopher and Elise Giard (MA), a great granddaughter Reya van Heerden, and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He was predeceased by 8 siblings as well as 9 cousins/adopted siblings. A graveside service will take place this summer. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Jim’s name can be sent to Pioneer Valley Hospice & Palliative Care, 329 Conway St., Greenfield, MA 01301
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of James R. (Jim) Giard, please visit our floral store.