Eric Craig, lifelong Princeton resident, dies at 84

Eric Craig

Eric Craig, a carpenter at Princeton University for more than three decades who was active in local civic and community groups, died on Dec. 2 surrounded by his loving family. He was 84.

The youngest child of Peyton and Harriet Craig, Eric was educated at the Witherspoon Street School for the Colored, and graduated from Princeton High School in 1953.

After graduation, he worked at various building and carpentry jobs, but his real passion was his work at Princeton University, where he mastered his carpentry skills for 33 years. He retired from Princeton in 1999.

Eric was active in the Witherspoon-Jackson Neighborhood Association and several other community groups. He also served on the school board for the Princeton Regional Schools and was a trustee for the Princeton-Blairstown Center.

After Eric retired, he liked socializing with other seniors who gathered weekdays at the Mount Pisgah Church for the Mercer County Nutrition Center Program. He enjoyed the fellowship at the program, and the heated debates he had with his fellow seniors about politics and local issues. Although he was not a member of Mount Pisgah or the Morning Star Church of God in Christ, he was a faithful supporter of both faith communities.

Eric loved the Adirondack Mountains and owned property there. An avid fisherman, he enjoyed fishing in the Adirondacks, and always made a stop at the Warrensberg Town Flea Market on his trips. A master tool collector, Eric treasured his collection of antique and collectible saws and other tools.

One of Eric’s favorite moments in life was meeting relative Richard Craig of Lawrenceville, Georgia. After conducting genealogy research to learn more about his family, Eric was happy to finally know his true roots on the Craig side. Richard received him with open arms when the two met, and they maintained a close friendship until Richard died.

A loving and dedicated husband, Eric was married to Minnie for 61 years. To appease Minnie for indulging him on many trips to flea markets, tool shows, and visits with his relatives in Georgia, he always made sure he took her out to have some fun at a casino, one of her favorite activities.

Eric was predeceased by his parents, siblings Peyton Jr., Ruth Anna, Gladys, Ross, Genvieve, Helen, Connie, Royal and Loyd, and grandson Julian. He is survived by his wife, Minnie;,daughters Miriam and Tracy; sons Glenn and Donald; loving grandchildren Eric, Shana and Gordon; great-grandchildren Tiana, Mariah, Jazlin, and Autumn; sister Lois; brother Jay; and a host of other relatives and friends in the Princeton, Trenton, and the Plainfield areas. He is also survived by his best friend, John Broadway. The two always made time for each other.

A funeral service will be held at noon on Monday, December 9, at the First Baptist Church of Princeton at the corner of John Street and Paul Robeson Place. Calling hours will be from 10 a.m. until the time of the church service. Interment will be private. Arrangements are by the Hughes Funeral Home.

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