John H. Giffin 3rd

John H. “Jay” “Dad” “Jaybird” “PopPop” Giffin 3rd, 63, passed away at his home in Nelson on May 17, 2019, with peace and dignity after a courageous eight-year battle with cancer. He was surrounded in the loving arms of his family. Jay’s family meant more to him than anything else.

He was born on Dec. 6, 1955, in Manchester. The eldest son to John H. Giffin Jr. and Prudence Smith Giffin. He attended Smith Road Elementary School in Manchester. In his high school years he attended Northfield Mount Hermon, graduating in 1975. Jay continued his studies at Hartwick College in Oneonta, N.Y., and at Keene State College.

After college, Jay began a 30-plus year career in painting, carpentry and restoration work. Through those years of work, Jay built partnerships and great friendships that will forever continue on.

In 1978, Jay met Sienna Merrifield Giffin in Harrisville. They married in 1990. Hands and hearts, they grew a 40-year life together. Piece by piece building the home of their dreams on the family hill in Nelson, that meant so much to them. In 1991 Jay aided in the home delivery of his first beautiful daughter, Abby. Then in 1993 he again aided in the home delivery of his precious son, Henry. His love for them was immeasurable.

Jay loved music, and sports of all types. He was an outstanding tennis player, loved skiing and was a fantastic cook. He loved naps in the sunshine and being snowbound on the hill with Sienna and the dogs. Jay loved and understood animals, even the geese. He also loved family trips to Hermit Island, Maine. He was fascinated with archaeology, The Giffin/Sheldon family history. He was well versed in politics, often comparing notes with his sister Jane. Jay searched and found peace and happiness in life. He was wise, honest and thoughtful and wanted to do the right thing.

Jaybird will forever be loved and deeply missed. His love will remain in the hearts of his wife, children and grandbabies forever. Jay is survived by his wife, Sienna Merrifield Giffin of Nelson; daughter, Abby Fiina Giffin and fiance, Matt Velez, of Marlborough; son, John H. Giffin 4th “Henry” and his wife, Kailah Lake Giffin, their three babies, Karson, Charlotte and Cynthia “Bugbite” of Stoddard; sister, Jane S. Giffin of Pittsford, Vt.; aunt, Deborah G. Rogers and daughter, Melissa Rogers, of Keene.

A graveside service will be held on June 22 at 11 a.m. at the Village Cemetery in Nelson followed by a celebration of Jay’s life at 336 Tolman Pond Road, Nelson. All are welcome to both.

Fletcher Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Keene has been entrusted with the arrangements. To express condolences or to share a memory, please visit