OUR TURN: A champion of MFalls, ‘Griff’ hard to replace

Marble Falls won’t see the likes of Clyde “Griff” Griffin again for a long time, if ever.

The businessman, entrepreneur and community activist — not to mention husband, father and grandfather — did so much for Marble Falls that it will be hard to find anyone today who can match his legacy of service.

Many newcomers to the city recall that Griffin was often the first person they met after their arrival.

His friendliness and insatiable curiosity about visitors and new residents earned him the unofficial title of “ambassador” for Marble Falls.

“Just call me ‘Griff,’” he was fond of saying as he shook your hand.

The ultimate good neighbor, Griffin, 92, died at his Meadowlakes home June 13 surrounded by family. His death marked the passing of an era for Marble Falls.

Griffin numbered among a handful of influential individuals during the past half-century who helped create what others recognize as modern Marble Falls.

He served on the Marble Falls/Lake LBJ Chamber of Commerce, the Marble Falls City Council and countless boards and committees. He was among those who helped create an emergency medical service for the city.

He also helped establish the city fire department by going to Connecticut to find a fire truck — and then driving it back to Marble Falls.

His dedication to community service is legendary.

He had been a member of the Rotary Club of Marble Falls, now called the Noon Rotary Club, since 1954.

The World War II pilot was not originally from Marble Falls, nor was he even a native Texan (his home state was Kentucky), but he got here as fast as he could.

That arrival was good news for the rest of us.

He understood the value of creating and maintaining a local business. In fact, he bought a tailor shop first before helping found an insurance and realty business that many today still consider a model for a sound local operation.

When he set his mind to do something, Griffin followed through.

He understood that sometimes people who cared deeply about something might still disagree about the best way to get the job done. His motto is one we can all live by: It’s fine to disagree; just don’t be disagreeable.

Griffin loved this community and wanted to see it remain successful. He possessed a true sense of community and had a burning desire to make it better.

The pride he felt in Marble Falls was a quality he wanted to share with everybody he met.

What a wonderful life lesson. He left an enduring example the rest of us would do well to follow — charity, service and a good attitude.

There is so much more that could be said about Griffin, but he would be the first to caution us not to put him on a pedestal.

One thing is for certain: Due to his tireless energy and enthusiasm, he left Marble Falls a better place than he found it.

The thousands who call Marble Falls home — nay, the tens of thousands who inhabit the Highland Lakes — owe “Griff” a debt of gratitude.


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