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H. James Gorman Jr.

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H. James Jim Gorman Jr. of Hingham, died Dec. 5, 2013. Born at Hingham Hospital, Feb. 5, 1933, the only child of Esther Brennan Gorman and Hugh J. Gorman Sr., Jim grew up in Crow Point and was a member of the Hingham High School, Class of 1950. At age 17, Jim enlisted in the United States Navy. Educated at the Armed Forces Institute in Madison, Wis., he was assigned to Naval Aviation and proudly served during the Korean War on aircraft carriers the USS Midway (CV-41) and the USS Franklin D. Roosevelt (CV-42) which at the time were the largest ships in the world. Thereafter, Gorman was assigned to the South Boston Army base where he was responsible for overseeing the maintenance of the aviation equipment of the mothballed aircraft carrier fleet moored there. In 1953 Gorman left active service and joined the Naval Reserve where he served for several years. During this time period, one of his now declassified assignments was working on the construction of the reactor shield for Americas first atomic submarine. Gorman attended the Bryant & Stratton School of Business and then joined the Boston office of the John Hancock Life Insurance Company. He later transferred to the New York City office working there as a group insurance representative and attending New York University. He was a member of the Princeton Club. Jim ultimately returned to Boston where he pioneered the development of a new insurance product known as Major Medical which had few defined benefits but functioned with deductibles and co-insurance. In 1965, he was promoted to the companys Cleveland Ohio office which he managed until 1968 when he returned to Boston to serve as a Senior Sales Executive in Hancocks home office. In 1974, Jim joined the State Mutual Life Insurance Company in Worcester, as a vice president again concentrating on group insurance and health and welfare benefit plans. In 1977, Jim joined Coopers & Lybrand where he served as Director of Group Insurance and Employee Benefits Consulting Services. In 1989 he opened his own benefits consulting firm. Among Jims more significant clients were Harvard University; National Presto Industries; Sheraton Corporation; the Episcopal Church of the United States; and the American Chinawear Manufacturers Association. Jim was a life member of the American Radio Relay League and his amateur Ham Radio call sign was K1VDQ. Jims station in South Hingham was very powerful and he spoke on-air with other ham operators as far away as the South Pole, Russia, New Zealand, China and India. During the great Alaskan earthquake of 1964, Jim was on the air for two days straight providing incoming and outgoing communications for the State of Alaska as all telephone service and communications had been wiped out. He recalled that the single most interesting person he spoke regularly with on the radio was Thomas Christian, a resident of Pitcairn Island and a direct descendent of Fletcher Christian of HMS Bounty infamy. For many years, Jim would broadcast The Night Before Christmas on Christmas Eve for the enjoyment of soldiers and sailors away from home and at sea. Jims favorite hobby was sailing. In 1969 he hand built a mahogany Mirror sailing dinghy Ding-A-Ling in his garage which he sailed in Hingham Harbor and on various lakes in New Hampshire. An accomplished and skillful sailor and navigator and a member of the Scituate Harbor Yacht Club since 1976, aboard various iterations of his yacht Chalet, he enjoyed day sails and longer excursions alike, frequently journeying to the North Shore, Plymouth, Provincetown and the Elizabeth Islands. He had many fond memories and stories of sailing with his wife Grace, taking friends whale watching or just out for an afternoon sail or relaxing at the mooring in Scituate Harbor. Jims love of sailing and community led to his service for the Bare Cove Chapter of the United States Power Squadrons. There, Gorman served as a member of the Board of Directors and the Education Officer for 14 years. He created and began the free Boating Safety Course taught in the Hingham, Scituate and Norwell public schools. Gorman authored the educational manuals now used as textbooks by the United States Power Squadrons, and taught over 1000 children the Rules of the Road and how to be safe on the water. Gorman also served as assistant chairman of the National Curriculum Development and Coordinating Committee which was responsible for writing and/or editing all study materials for the USPS and was also responsible for creating power point programs to accompany classroom lectures for many of the courses. Gorman also taught adult classes ranging from boating safety and small boat handling to celestial navigation. In 2004, the United States Power Squadrons presented Gorman the Charles F. Chapman Award for outstanding performance and skill in teaching the science and art of navigation, seamanship and small boat handling. It is the highest recognition award given to any individual in the USPS. In 2013, Jim completed his studies in celestial navigation and received the Senior Navigator Award from the USPS. SN or Senior Navigator is the highest academic distinction given by the United States Power Squadrons. Jim was also an active supporter in local amateur sports. In 1976 he was a co-owner of the South Shore Braves of the New England Junior Hockey League. He founded the non-profit South Shore Amateur Athletic Foundation which fund-raised and sponsored a team of local high school hockey players for a European tour of games in Finland and Sweden in 1980 as well as the Hingham Phillies semi-professional baseball team and the Militia girls lacrosse team. Jim was a super fan and supporter never missing one of his sons hockey games from pee wee through college and attended the majority of the sporting, musical, theatrical and school events of each of his grandchildren. A devout member of the Resurrection Parish, Jim employed his stentorian style and voice as a lector there for fifteen years. Jim leaves Grace, his beloved wife of 61 years; Christine, his daughter and her husband, David Roy of Milford; and Hugh III, his son and his wife Mary Ellen of Hingham; along with grandchildren, David Roy (and his wife Heather), Katherine Greene (and her husband Andy), Mary Kate Gorman, Molly Grace Gorman, Maude Gorman, Hugh Gorman IV; and great-grandson, Simon Greene. Visiting hours were held 4-8 p.m. Monday, Dec. 9, 2013, in the Pyne Keohane Funeral Home, 21 Emerald Street (Off Central St.), Hingham. A celebration of life service was held Tuesday at 9:15 a.m. in the funeral home, followed by the funeral Mass in Church of the Resurrection, 1057 Main Street, Hingham, at 10 a.m. Interment at High Street Cemetery. Donations can be made in Jims honor to the Jimmy Fund Clinic/DFCI, 450 Brookline Avenue, Boston, MA 02215-5450.

Published in The Hingham Journal from Dec. 10 to Dec. 17, 2013
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