Easthampton- Bernard “Bunny” Francis Shea Sr, age 86, formerly of the Leeds section of Northampton, died on early Saturday morning September 28th , at his residence in the comfort of family after a lengthy battle with cancer.
He was born in Northampton on June 14, 1933 and was the son of the late John Joseph Shea and Rita (Bernard) Shea Hubbard. Raised in the Northampton he was educated in the public elementary schools and was a graduate from Northampton High School in the class of 1950. In September of 1951 he enlisted in the United States Navy during the Korean War and he was a Petty Officer and served aboard the destroyers, USS Yellowstone, USS Harold J. Ellison, USS Carney DDG-64 before being discharged on September 9, 1955. Upon his return from military service Bernard went to American International College in Springfield for a number of years.
He began his career in the insurance industry and worked for Prudential Life Insurance for twenty five years before retiring as the District Manager. He then started his second career with his wife and family purchasing and operated “Sandy's Chicken Kitchen” in Florence for six years, before another business venture, purchasing and operating Northampton Country Club for six years. In his free time he enjoyed playing golf, bird watching, hunting, traveling and in his younger years playing baseball for the Baystate AA'S. “Bunny”was a lifetime member of the Florence Elks Lodge #997 and his flag is in the Field of Honor for his honorable and faith full service to our country.
He is survived by loving wife of forty years, Carol Jean (Berniche) Shea of Easthampton, four daughters; Wendy Menatti and husband Michael of Lee, Judy Shea of Haydenville, Katy Berube and husband Mark of Easthampton, Heidi Andrade and husband Joe of Florida, two stepdaughters; Joy Turner and husband Donald of Williamsburg, Robin Francis of Boston, two sons; Bernard F. Shea Jr and wife Lisa of Southampton, John P. Shea Sr and wife Shelly of Chicopee, one stepson; Gordon E. Williams of Easthampton, grandchildren; Jake, Jesse, Jack, Jillian, Shaylin, Arthur, Chauntel, Sierra, Shawn, Nathan, Shenice, Darius, Matt, Jesse, Jaimie, Joe, Jeremy, Jason, along with many great grandchildren, a sister; Nancy Swazlowski and husband Frank of Hatfield, many cousins and many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by two grandchildren; John Patrick Shea Jr, April Francis, a brother; Richard Shea and a sister; Susan Swazlowski.
A Funeral Liturgy of Christian Burial for Bernard is scheduled for Saturday October 5th at 11am at the Our Lady of the Valley Parish, 33 Adams Street in Easthampton, burial with Military Honors at Saint Mary's Cemetery in Haydenville will follow the liturgy, a calling hour will be held prior to the service from 9:30- 10:45am at the GRAHAM FUNERAL HOME & CREMATION SERVICES, 18 Adams Street in Easthampton, whom honorably and proudly has been entrusted with Bernard's care and services. Please visit rwgrahamfuneralhome.com for service information and online condolences, in lieu of flowers, please make donations in his memory to the Cooley Dickinson VNA & Hospice, 168 Industrial Drive, Northampton, MA. 01060
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Cooley Dickinson VNA & Hospice
168 Industrial Drive, Northampton MA 01060