Buckley, John R. (Jack)
Of Abington, son of the late Thomas H. and Helen L. Buckley died at the age of 88 on Tuesday, January 21st. Born January 1, 1932 he was the husband of 55 years of the late Bette Ann (Paulding) Buckley who passed away on December 31,2010.
John was educated in the Abington elementary schools, Boston Public Latin School and received a BA degree from Harvard College in 1954. Upon graduation he fulfilled his two year military obligation at the end of the Korean Conflict from 1954 to 1956 with six months at Fort Dix NJ and eighteen months at the Pentagon, Arlington VA. After his discharge he began a career in retail as an assistant buyer at Wm Filene’s Basement in Boston MA. In 1960 the field of government and politics beckoned and John was elected Town Treasurer for the town of Abington at the age of 29. In 1964 he was elected to the first of six terms in the Massachusetts House of Representatives and served as the Chairman of the Committee on Public Service and later the Chairman of the Committee on Taxation (appointed by Speaker David M. Bartley). At the beginning of his sixth term, in 1975, John resigned when he was appointed Secretary of Administration and Finance by Governor Michael S. Dukakis. In 1979 when Gov. Dukakis left office, he became the Executive Vice-President and then interim President of the Community College System. After the reorganization of Higher Education John left government and joined Corporate Realty Associates in Brockton with the late George Baldwin and Bradford Tighe.
He was involved in several activities in Abington including the elected Town Moderator for ten years; charter member of the Citizens Scholarship Committee and Education Foundation, the Community Preservation Committee and other committees involved in town government. He was a member of the Abington Oldtown Football Association and co-captained a team with the late Gordon Bates. John was the chairman of the Democratic Town Committee for twenty-five years and Chairman of the Plymouth County Democratic League and was active in other Democratic state activities. In 1968 he worked on the Robert F. Kennedy campaign in Indiana and California.
John enjoyed traveling with his wife and particularly enjoyed his annual trips to Hilton Head with his family. He enjoyed attending all the various activities of his children and grandchildren, from dance recitals, to football, baseball, soccer, and softball fields, as well as basketball gyms and the dreaded freezing cold hockey rinks. John loved the holidays especially Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners with his extended family. John loved working in his gardens and yard and was as comfortable leaning on his rake as anywhere. He also loved the town of Abington. He loved the sports, the politics, and more than anything, the people.
He is survived by his son John R. Buckley Jr. and his wife Paula F. of Brockton; his grandchildren Rose E. Buckley of Quincy, John R. Buckley III of NYC and Elizabeth F. Buckley of Brockton; his son Thomas M. Buckley and his wife Susan L. of Abington; his grandchildren Elysia R. Buckley of Oakland CA, Rachel H. Buckley of Wentworth NH and Meghan M. and Connor J. Buckley of Abington; his daughter Pamela A. Berry and her partner Robert Drew of Plympton; his granddaughter Jessica A. Meurer and her husband Christopher and his great grand-daughter Rosalie Bette Meurer of Hanover and his son Michael P. Buckley and his wife Ann and grandchildren Noel S. and Catherine A. Buckley of Pembroke.
He is also survived by is brother Rev. Thomas W. Buckley of Abington and two sisters Maryellen A. Harrington of West Roxbury and Suzanne C. Buckley of Keene NH. as well as several nieces and nephews.
Visiting hours will be held on Sunday, January 26th, 3 to 7 pm at Quealy & Son Funeral Home 116 Adams Street, Abington. His funeral mass is Monday at 10 a.m. in St. Bridget’s church Abington. Burial in the Buckley family plot in St. Patrick’s cemetery will be private. For directions and online guestbook www.quealyandson.com
In lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Greenwave Boosters, PO Box 2140, Abington.
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