James R. Bridgeland, Jr.
James R. Bridgeland, Jr.

February 16, 1929 - January 22, 2019
Born in Cleveland, OH
Resided in Indian Hill, OH

Obituary

James R. Bridgeland, Jr., 89, of Cincinnati, Ohio, died peacefully on January 22, 2019, surrounded by four generations of his loving family.

Jim was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1929 of James R. Bridgeland and Alice Laura Huth of Bellville and Cleveland, Ohio. He was an Eagle Scout before graduating as Salutatorian from Ellet High School in 1947 and from Akron University Summa Cum Laude in 1951. Jim served as a Lieutenant in the U.S. Air Force and was stationed on Fukushima Island, Japan for two years during the Korean War. He returned from war and earned a Masters in Humanities from Harvard University in 1954 where he studied under historian Samuel Elliot Morrison, who called him one of the best writers he had taught. Jim graduated with honors from the Harvard Law School in 1957, where he won the Ames Moot Court Competition.

Jim came to Cincinnati, where he practiced law at the Taft, Stettinius & Hollister law firm for more than 40 years, heading up the corporate law practice. He used his legal skills in India, Australia, and throughout Europe and the United States. He served on the board of directors of U.S. Bank, Emery Industries and other companies.

Beyond his career in the law, Jim’s lifetime passion was English Literature. He taught courses on the works of Jane Austen and William Shakespeare at the Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Cincinnati for more than 25 years, engaging students in lively discussions about what literary art teaches us about “what it means to be human.”

Jim was very active in his community, as President of the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and the Harvard Club of Cincinnati, and as an active member of the Literary Club of Cincinnati, the Commonwealth Commercial Club, and the Optimist Club. He served on the boards of the Cincinnati Opera, Mercantile Library, and Cincinnati Shakespeare Company.

Jim was Mayor of Indian Hill, an Elder and Bible Study Group Leader at the Indian Hill Church, President of the Indian Hill School Board and the PTA, and a little league coach.

More than anything, Jim loved his daily fellowship with his extensive family. He was a loving husband for 65 years to Margaret Bates Bridgeland, and father-in-law to Terry K. Crilley, both of whom preceded him in death in 2014. He was devoted to, and is survived by, a family who loved and honored him: his five children, their spouses, and 16 grandchildren, Debby Bridgeland Mason (Jim: Marc, Michael, and Katie); Cindy Bridgeland Crilley (Paige, Blake and James); Becky Bridgeland Long (Ross: Erin and Ali); Alicia Beth Bridgeland (Don McGraw: Robert, Austen, Zane, Hollis and Perrin Lampe), and John Marshall Bridgeland (Maureen: Caily, Fallon and James Regis); and his 17 great-grandchildren.

Jim’s favorite quote was from Hamlet: “There's a divinity that shapes our ends, Rough-hew them how we will” and embraced death as part of the journey of a wonderful life.

His life will be celebrated in a memorial service on Saturday, February 2 at 2 pm, with a reception to follow, at the Indian Hill Church, 6000 Drake Road, Cincinnati, Ohio. The family will have a private gathering at the burial site.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that gifts be sent to the Cincinnati Shakespeare Company, the Cincinnati Ballet, and Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of Cincinnati.

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Services

Service
Memorial Service
6000 Drake Road
Cincinnati, OH US 45243
Saturday, February 2, 2019
2:00 PM
Family Gathering
Reception
6000 Drake Road
Cincinnati, OH US 45243
Saturday, February 2, 2019
3:00 PM