He prepared at The Hill School, where he participated in wrestling, tennis, and publications. While at Princeton he was an alternate cheerleader, a member of the Yacht Club, and an assistant manager of varsity basketball. He left Princeton after his sophomore year, served four years in the Navy, and graduated from Yale, where he majored in economics.
Briggs was an entrepreneur, benefactor,avid sports fan, 20-year race-car owner, and accomplished Angus breeder, among other things.
He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Elizabeth; children Marcia, Cecily, Briggs IV, Thomas, Paige, Brian, Robert, and Blair; grandchildren Lucie, Windsor, Riley, Mace, Olivia, Warren, and Exton; and his sister, Lynn Maddock.