James P. Deming
Retired Lunenburg Fire Chief; 86
GARDNER -- James P. Deming, 86, died peacefully Monday, June 23, 2014, at the Legend Center in Gardner.
He leaves his loving wife of 65 years, Nancy (Whitcomb) Deming; one son, James L. Deming and his wife, Andrea of Cape Coral, FL, one daughter, Sally Deming and her longtime companion, Alby Donaldson of Lunenburg; four grandchildren, Michelle Deming of Fitchburg, Nathan Ahokas of Arvada, CO, Joshua P. Deming of Lancaster, Erin Guimond of Fitchburg; two step-grandchildren, Stephen Chiasson of Leominster, Brian Chiasson of Fitchburg; six great-grandchildren; a brother, Charles Deming, and his wife, Betty of Lunenburg; a sister, Peggy (Deming) Goodell of Lunenburg; three nephews, Steve Gay, George Gay, Charlie Whitcomb; and one niece, Amy (Whitcomb) Ricciuti.
He is predeceased by a son, Thomas B. Deming, and a sister, Edith (Deming) Gay.
James was born in Fitchburg, on April 28, 1928, a son of the late James A. and Julia (Cantillon) Deming. He graduated from Lunenburg High School in 1948. James grew up in Lunenburg, and lived there until his retirement from the Lunenburg Fire Department, in Dec.1982. James joined the Lunenburg Fire Department in 1943, and became the first full-time Chief, in April of 1964. As Chief, he initiated the towns first rescue wagon service, and oversaw the training and hiring of all the EMTS. His greatest satisfaction as Chief came from mentoring the young men who joined the department. Many of those same young men went on to become Officers and Chiefs, both in the Town of Lunenburg and other towns and cities across the country.
James spent the first five years of his retirement in Florida, were he loved boating, surf fishing, golfing and swimming in the ocean. Later, he and his wife settled in Phillipston, where they made many dear friends and were active in the community. James was blessed to have been able to travel across the country many times with his wife in their R/V. They visited every state, including Alaska many times over. They spent many weekends square dancing with the Jump Town Twirlers, an organization on whose board James proudly served. Both James and Nancy were also very active in the Congregational Church of Phillipston.
Most of all, he was a loving and caring husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather. James will be greatly missed by all who knew and loved him.
James' family would like to thank the staff at The Legend Center in Gardner for the wonderful care James received, and the compassion given to his family.
DEMING -- Funeral Services will be held on Saturday, June 28, at 11:00 a.m. in The Congregational Church of Phillipston, 62 Common RR1, Phillipston, MA 01331. Burial will be private, at a later date, in the South Cemetery, Lunenburg, MA. Calling Hours will be on Friday, June 27, from 4:00 -7:00 p.m., in the Lunenburg Chapel of the Sawyer-Miller-Masciarelli Funeral Homes, 763 Mass. Avenue, Lunenburg, MA. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions can be made in James' name to The Shine Initiative, C/O Fidelity Bank, 9 Leominster Connection, Leominster, MA 01453, or may be left at the Funeral Home. See (www.masciarellifamilyfuneralhomes.net), for further information.
Sawyer-Miller-Masciarelli Funeral Home - Lunenburg Chapel
763 Massachusetts Avenue Lunenburg, MA 01462
Published in Sentinel & Enterprise on June 26, 2014