ROBERT LAURENCE NASON
1946 - 2021
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NASON, Robert Laurence Bob Was the Town Manager of Lee, Massachusetts Bob, born in Everett, MA on St. Patrick's Day, March 17, 1946, died unexpectedly at home in Lee, MA on January 5, 2021. Born to Lawrence (Larry) and Bernice (Bunny Fale) Nason, he was the middle of three children. While he would claim he was the "overlooked" middle child, his sisters, wife, and all other family members would certainly say his beloved mother definitely spoiled him. Bob spent his very happy childhood in Melrose, MA, where he attended and graduated from elementary and high school. He grew up in a tight knit neighborhood of families and friends and remained in touch with many throughout his life. Bob played sports, including football and basketball, and attended the Rotary Y camp in Boxford, MA. He graduated from Villanova University in 1968. He attended Villanova expecting to be a chemical engineer but graduated with a BA in political science and a love for college basketball, "March madness" and the Wildcats, as well as lifelong friends including Mike, Cathy, Roddy and Gino. Upon graduating, Bob joined the Peace Corps and spent two years in Colombia, diversifying agriculture, helping to build many one-room schoolhouses and living as the only "gringo," with a horse for transportation high in the Andes. Upon his return to the U.S., Bob became a conscientious objector to the Vietnam War and was assigned to work at Spaulding Rehab Hospital (then Mass Rehab). As a fluent Spanish speaker, he helped to organize the hospital workers and performed in Waiting for Lefty, a play about a meeting of cab drivers who are planning a labor strike. He volunteered on Markey's first campaign for Congress and remained a fan to this day. Once his service ended, he started a long career as a public servant, first in affordable housing with the Melrose and Chelsea Housing Authorities, the State of Massachusetts Department of Housing and Community Development and Department of Mental Health. In 1998, he and his wife Lisa (Sloane) moved to Lee, MA, where he served as the Town Manager for 19 years. While he loved his work, he also enjoyed his well-deserved retirement. He loved nothing more than playing golf with his friends and relatives including Jerry, Thom, Fred, Mike, Nick, Todd, Nic, and his now-deceased father-in-law. Walking the nine-hole Donald Ross course Greenock in Lee was one of his joys. He also volunteered in many ways as a member of the Lions Club, tutored ESL through Literacy Network of the Southern Berkshires and at his untimely death was being trained as a mediator for Berkshire County Regional Housing Authority. Bob loved to travel. His first trip to Europe was in 1989 and continued throughout his lifetime. With his wife and daughter and extended family, he traveled to Paris and other parts of France, England (including Wivenhoe, his grandfather's native home), Ireland, Spain, Austria, Hungary, Czech Republic, Canada, Mexico and Israel. In retirement, he purchased a special golf travel case so he could golf when he visited his daughter in California or with his wife when she traveled for work. In 1988, working for the state housing agency, he met his wife Lisa (Sloane). They married in Salem, MA on August 10, 1996 in a joyful ceremony and party with beloved family and friends. There was no more joyful event for Bob than the birth of his daughter Sally. From kindergarten, until last March when travel and games were canceled, he never missed a soccer, basketball or lacrosse game, graduation or any other important event in her life. He met every (known) suitor with a firm handshake and serious look in his eye. He told her when she was old enough to be President, she could date and he adopted a friend's motto that "he was not afraid to go to jail." In addition to his wife Lisa Sloane and his daughter Sally Nason, Bob leaves his beloved and loving family including his sisters Jackie Maher (Wakefield) and Jean and her husband Jim Prendergast (Braintree), his mother-in-law Toby Sloane (Swampscott, MA and Highland Beach, FL), his sister-in-law Amy (Sloane) and Nic Pinel (Greensboro, NC and Paris, France), his brother-in-law Todd and Lili (Arienti) Sloane (Newton, MA) and his beloved nieces and nephews Stacy Maher (Wakefield), Jim and Gillian (Roberts) Maher (Port Hueneme, CA) and their children David and John, Becky (Maher) and John Powell (Melrose) and their children Kate Ellen and Jolie, Caitlin (Prendergast) and Jake Gaffey and their baby Maeve, Allie Pinel and Sarah Pappalardo (Brooklyn, NY), Charlie Pinel (Los Angeles, CA), Olivia Sloane (Boston) and Ian Sloane (Newton). Bob was preceded in his death by his parents Larry and Bunny Nason, his grandparents Ellen & Tom Fale, his brother-in-law Alex Maher, and his father-in-law Carl Sloane. Please raise a glass of red wine to Bob on March 17, when he would have turned 75. Those wishing to make a donation are encouraged to donate to the Lee Food Pantry or your own local food pantry, the Literacy Network of the Southern Berkshires or the Berkshire Immigrant Center. Services are private. To send remembrances to his family, go to www.finnertyandstevens.com

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Published in Boston Globe from Jan. 11 to Jan. 12, 2021.
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Memories & Condolences
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20 entries
January 20, 2021
Lisa and Sally, I am so sad for the loss of your beloved Bob. He was a wonderful man. Always kind, helpful and patient. I enjoyed working with him for the 10 years I served with him on the finance committee. I know the heartache of loosing someone you love so much, but you can now fill the hole in your heart with fond memories of him and carry it with you always. Paddy and Shawn send their sincere condolences to you.
JoAnn Sullivan
Friend
January 15, 2021
To Bob's family and friends I offer my sincere condolences and deepest sympathies.
I met Bob soon after he became Executive Director of the Melrose Housing Authority in the late 1980s,
and worked with him as one of the MHA Commissioners over the next decade. He was a warm, knowledgeable, and energetic leader. There were a number of serious construction problems facing some of the MHA's housing at that time, and for the next few years Bob worked long hours in order to correct those problems, and then worked even harder to create a housing authority that was recognized for its overall excellence and for its ethical strength. There was never a commissioner's question to Bob that wasn't answered quickly and completely. He left a legacy fully consistent with his life long ideals.
Richard Boutwell
Coworker
January 15, 2021
As a former Peace Corps volunteer (Peru - yes, food was a topic), I knew Bob was a kindred spirit. It led us both to lives of giving. Bob was welcoming, open, genuine, ALWAYS ready to help, dedicated, and more. Our committee was so grateful for his support over the years. I'm so sorry for your loss but celebrate the life he lived, the person he was. He left the world a better place!
Peter Hofman
Coworker
January 14, 2021
Lisa and Sally, our hearts are broken. We love you and we will miss Bob so much.
Mary Grant and Jim Canavan
Friend
January 13, 2021
We are so sorry for your loss. Bob was always encouraging and kind whilst we worked on the house and would always wave in passing. We will remember him fondly. We send out deepest condolences, Amanda, Jamie and family
Amanda Rankin
Neighbor
January 13, 2021
Lisa and Sally,
I am so very sorry for your loss. Please know you’re in my thoughts and prayers.
Marianne Ballee
Teacher
January 13, 2021
LePrevost Plumbing and Heating would like to send our deepest condolences to Lisa, Sally and the entire family.
LePrevost Plumbing and Heating
Friend
January 12, 2021
I worked with Bob in Chelsea MA and have fond memories of his professional skills and warm personality. Lisa and family, my thoughts are with you.
Jim Wessler
Coworker
January 12, 2021
I didn't know Bob well. I first met him in junior high (Coolidge) and remember him as a skillful athlete and very friendly guy. I didn't have much contact with him in high school and none later. I had no idea that he grew up to be such a fine man. And what a lovely obituary, which was shared on the MHS listserv! Thanks for that.
Tom Couser
Classmate
January 12, 2021
Grief can be so hard, but our special memories help us cope. Remembering you and your loved one today and always.
Kevin Palmer
Coworker
January 12, 2021
Bob in Tobys poolside cabana at Highland Beach. Snow up north meant we had an extra day to visit Toby, a most gracious host!
William Dugan
Friend
January 12, 2021
2018 golf trip. Boca Raton breakfast before golf, with Bob and John Coddington and Willy Dugan.
William Dugan
Friend
January 12, 2021
As soon as Bob retired he knew there had to be a Florida winter golf trip. He made it happen expertly. A memory to cherish.
William Dugan
Friend
January 12, 2021
Dear Lisa and Sally, we were sad to hear of your loss. Please extend our condolences to the family.
Barbara and Harvey Deitel
Barbara Deitel
Family
January 12, 2021
Nason family,

Please accept our sincere condolences.
Lenox Police Department
January 12, 2021
To the Nason Family ~
I'm sorry for your loss, and I'm sorry I just got to know Bob this morning. What a wonderful gentleman he was.
I too will be raising a glass of red wine to him on March 17, when I will turn 75.
Best wishes,
Don Becker
Waltham, MA
Don Becker
Friend
January 12, 2021
Dear Lisa,Sally and Family,
Please accept our deepest prayers and sympathy in the loss of Bob w,husband and father. He lead a fulfilling life. Memories are what sustain us in these times. I know all of yours will stay close to your hearts. Call on them. It helps. Love to both of you.
Patrick and Marie Gormalley
Friend
January 9, 2021
Lovely dinner with friends at Cafe Adam - 2 June 2018
Robert Oliver
Friend
January 9, 2021
Trip to the Berkshire International Film Festival - 2 June 2018
Robert Oliver
Friend
January 9, 2021
My sincerest condolences to the Nason – Sloane family. Bob Nason was a very special person, as he was supervisor, mentor and friend.
I worked with Bob when he was the Chelsea Housing Authority Executive Director. He had hired me as the outreach coordinator, just after I had completed my service with the Peace Corps in Gabon. During my three-year tenure at CHC, l had worked closely with him to improve the housing services for low income families and elderly residents. I learned quite a lot from his leadership style. He was an individual who had fostered very good working relations with staff, local political leaders, police as well as teachers from the city. Like in Lee, he was very focused on mobilizing state and federal resources for the properties we managed. He is perhaps the best note taker I’ve ever met. And one who always used pencils at work ! You don’t see that anymore.
Bob was also a former Peace Corps volunteer and served in Colombia. He continued to work as a civil servant and agent of change in every position he held. A quality that I certainly admired about him.
I left the Housing Authority to obtain a graduate degree and then went to work for the UN World Food Program. I have always stayed in contact with Bob and what amazed me was how versed he was about world affairs. He always knew something about the countries where I was stationed !
The last time I saw Bob was when I visited Lee in June 2018. Even after having retired as Town Manager, he was still felt committed to helping the town flourish. That was clear in the manner he engaged with retail owners and other residents. Taking through the town with him was inspirational. He seemed to lighten up people along the way !
I will miss him company, specifically his laughter, and cherish the number of hearth worm memories I have of him. May his soul rest in please.
Robert Oliver writing from Goma, Democratic Republic of Congo

Robert Oliver
Friend
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