James Matthew Conti, aka “Big Jim Conti
aka "Big Jim Conti" was born in Providence, Rhode Island on 11 Feb 1955. He and his parents, Ralph and Eleanor Conti, and two brothers, Fred A Conti and Joseph B Conti moved to Bermuda with his father's job at the Air base there in the 1950s. Jim, Fred and Joe attended British schools in Bermuda shorts, white shirts and ties. Jim played Pop Warner football but he also learned to play RUGBY. After Elementary school the brothers transferred to the base high school named for Roger B Chaffey of astronaut fame. Jim played football and basketball and graduated from High School with honors and entered the US Naval Academy at age 17. After two years he transferred to University of Rhode Island as a Junior and again graduated with honors with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering. His first job out of college was with Admiral Rickover's "Electric Boat" in Connecticut. With his nuclear submarine experience he was hired at the shipyard at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii in the late 1970s. He met his future wife, Noelle Sutherland, on a hike in the Waianae mountains and a year later they were married on the ridge overlooking Lualualei valley by the Rev Edith Wolfe in a joyful, musical, religious and civil ceremony witnessed by friends and relatives on 7/11/1981. They had been married for 35 years and four months when Jim passed away from the complications of sarcoma cancer on 11/11/2016. Jim's jobs with the Department of Defense were with shop 2340 as STE and Chief Test engineer with the nuclear subs. His jobs with the Department of Energy took them to Washington state at the Hanford Reservation near Richland, WA; to Colorado at the Rocky Flats facility between Boulder and Golden; and finally to Amarillo, Texas to the Pantex facility. In each state they owned and remodeled homes in the local area and made friends with fellow workers and neighbors, many of whom remained friends over the years. When Noelle's mother Audrey became advanced in age, Jim and Noelle returned to the islands bringing their son ,Sam, born in 1996. They designed and built a home in cool Wahiawa Heights between mother Audrey's home in Haleiwa and Jim's job back at the Shipyard at Pearl Harbor. Both during his working years and upon retirement, Jim loved to play basketball and body surf with Sam and friends from the Shipyard. Jim was well known in Wahiawa as an amateur basketball player and then as a PAL coach and finally as a bonafide referee. He loved dressing in his "zebra shirt" and had memorized all the basketball rules using the same gusto and thoroughness that he used on his textbooks and engineering manuals. During Jim and Noelle's marriage, Jim's parents continued to live in Bermuda and then retired to Florida. Jim and Noelle visited, both to Bermuda and several times over the years to Florida. Jim and Noelle took foster kids and an adopted kid and finally their own son, Sam to see the grandparents. Grandpa Ralph took them all to see Busch Gardens the Tampa Zoo and the gulf beaches of Hudson, Florida. When they passed away, both Ralph and Eleanor were inurned at the VA Cemetery near Orlando, Florida. Jim, Noelle, and Sam have visited the engraved niche there. Jim Conti's funeral service and reception will be held in Honolulu at The Church of the Crossroads, 1212 University Ave. on January 19th at 4 PM for the service and 5 to 7 PM or later for the reception Please come in comfortable Aloha attire. Donations or cards may be made to the Family, or In Memory of Jim Conti to Church of The Crossroads, or Hospice Hawaii. Inquiries may be made to the Crossroads office 949-2220. Jim Conti is survived by his wife, Noelle Conti Kanoelehua Sutherland, son Samuel Conti Makana Sutherland, two brothers, and two Conti nieces.
Our deepest condolences to the family and friends of the deceased