US Navy

James Dewey Marsh

December 18, 1924 ~ March 13, 2020 (age 95)

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James Dewey Marsh, 95, of Morehead City, died peacefully on Friday, March 13­, 2020, at the Crystal Coast Hospice House.

He was born on December 18, 1924, in Madison, Wisconsin. He graduated and enlisted in the Navy in January 1942, at 17 years old. His military career lasted 3 decades which included 3 wars: World War II, Korea and Vietnam. He retired in 1972, after 30 years of patriotic service.

After he retired, he and his wife, Bette Marsh, built Marsh’s Surf and Sea in 1972. It has become a family legacy and part of the basis for the surfing industry in Carteret County and the East Coast. The Eastern Surfing Association was established in the 70’s and the Marsh’s Scholarship Foundation was established in honor of his son, Mike Marsh. The business name has changed to Marsh’s Surf Shop and was turned over to his youngest son, Mickey Marsh, who, with the help of two of his children, still carry on the legacy.

Mr. Marsh lived his life as an amazing Patriot, loving father and humanitarian. He was satisfied with his life’s choices and, if you listened, his final words were probably, “Semper Fi”.

He is survived by his daughter, Peggy Kneib of Morehead City; sons, Patrick Marsh of Raleigh and Mickey Marsh of Morehead City; 9 grandchildren, Gretchen Kendall, Erika Hardison, MJ Marsh, Frances Spencer, Ashley Marsh, Patrick Marsh, Payne Marsh, Parker Marsh and Jonathan Marsh; and 8 great grandchildren, Zack Kendall, Holt Kendall, Chauncey Kendall, Sydney Hardison, “Little Mick” Marsh, Wheatley Marsh, Jack Spencer and Benjamin Marsh.

Preceding his death was his wife of 45 years, Bette Marsh; his second son, Mike Marsh; and his second wife, Leona Marsh.

A Celebration of Life will be scheduled at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in his memory to the Marsh’s Scholarship Foundation, which is payable to the Eastern Surfing Association, P.O. Box 4736, Ocean City, MD 21843.

Family and friends are welcome to submit online condolences at

Arrangements by Munden Funeral Home and Crematory in Morehead City, NC. 

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