Oxley-Heard Funeral Home has been serving the community since 1931.
John J. Donnelly

John J. Donnelly

June 29, 1919 - May 12, 2020     Age: 100

After an amazing life of over 100 years, John J. Donnelly passed away surrounded by his family in Fernandina Beach, FL on May 12, 2020.  John was born on June 29, 1919 to the late Mary and John Donnelly in Clinton, Massachusetts.  John is a veteran of the World War II, honorably serving in the U.S. Army Air Corps from July 1943 to October 1945.  During the war he took part in the Normandy, Northern France, Ardennes, Rhineland and Central Europe Air Offensive campaigns.

John met the love of his life, Barbara and they married on June 25, 1949.  They celebrated John’s 100 Birthday and their 70th Anniversary in their home town of Clinton in June of 2019.  John and Barbara have seven children; six girls and one boy, who were all brought up in Clinton.  During our childhood, the highlight of the weekend with Dad was our Friday night walks to the Clinton football games, ice skating on Mossy Pond, skiing Snake Hill and yearly summer vacations in our rental cottage along the Ocean in Wells Maine, with our Grandmother, Nana.

After retirement, John and Barbara had a winter home in Florida that they loved to “escape the New England winters”.   They enjoyed more than 30 years wintering in Florida and returning home every year to their home in Clinton.  They were avid bikers and would ride the rail trails in Cape Cod, New Hampshire and in Florida.  Even in their later years, they would average 75-100 miles of biking per week. 

John was predeceased by his Father, James Donnelly Sr., Mother, Mary (Burke) Donnelly, Brother, James Donnelly and Grandson, Andrew Wright that he fondly called “Little Andrew”.

He leaves behind his loving wife, Barbara Donnelly; daughters; Patricia Johnson, Kathleen (Claudio) Ditullio, Maureen (Lawrence) Abramson, Pamela (Paul) Guyette all from Fernandina Beach, FL; Susan Wright of Milford, NH, Paula (Fred) Bryson of Waltham, MA and son; John (Robin) Donnelly Jr. of Groton, MA; 15 grandchildren, 17 great grandchildren and several nieces and nephews. 

A memorial mass will be celebrated at a later date with the immediate family.  We are truly blessed to have “Our Dad” in our lives.  Rest in Peace Dad… Until we see you again.

 

5 Condolences

  • Mary Ellen W. Posted May 14, 2020 8:05 pm

    My thoughts and prayers to the entire Donnelly family. I got to know John very well over these past few years and will miss his humor, his counting and the 5pm pretzels and beer. I will miss you very much. RIP

  • Mary. Maxwell Posted May 15, 2020 12:40 am

    I was looking at my husbands page and stubbled on this page. Such a beautiful life story!! My husband and I were married 25 years. We had a beautiful life too. Miss him so much, but reading about your family helps me feel so much better! Maybe you all should write a book about his life?! Sounds like it would be a good read! My condolences Mary Maxwell ( my husband Neil Maxwell )Look him up!!

  • Ron Taylor Posted May 15, 2020 7:09 am

    I had the privilege of meeting Mr. Donnelly and his wife several years ago at as a guest at a family Christmas gathering, A gentleman and obviously loved and respected by his family. His family is a lasting legacy of him and his loving wife. My deepest sympathies to the Donnelly family.

  • Mary Kilcoyne McNally Posted May 20, 2020 9:55 pm

    Dear Barbara & Family,

    I sent you a sympathy note last night but I am afraid it did not go through. I just wanted to let you know how sorry we were to see John’s obituary in the Worcester Telegram a few days ago. What an amazing life he had! Such an amazing life the two of you had together! And we were so impressed by the battles John took part in during WWII. He must have been a very brave young soldier.

    I remember all the times I saw you and John during the summer months that you spent back in Clinton. You were either walking or riding your bikes by our house on your way up to the North Dyke. You both amazed me by how active you still were in your later years.

    I know the last few years were difficult due to John’s poor eye sight. You took such good care of him. Now I hope you will get some rest knowing that John is at peace. Please let your children spoil you.

    Most Sincerely,

    Mary & Bill McNally
    Clinton, MA

  • Walter OGara Posted June 17, 2020 12:05 pm

    Jon was a good friend and wonderful man condolence to Barbara and family

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