1929 - 2020
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KENEFICK, James L. "Jim" Of Needham, passed away on November 14, 2020, at the age of 91 years old, after a long and distinguished life that focused on family, faith and public service. Jim was born on June 25, 1929, in Detroit, MI, to James William Kenefick, a plumber, and Agnes Emily Kenefick (Moore). Jim, with his brother Joseph and sister Marie, were raised in Utica, NY, where they had a large extended family. Jim was predeceased by his wife of 55 years, Alice Marie Kenefick (Campbell), who passed away in 2012. Alice and Jim met in New York City while he was in school and she was working as a librarian. In October of 1957 they were married in Scranton, PA, Alice's hometown. The Keneficks had three children: Ellen Marie, James Peter and Paul William. Jim graduated from Niagara University in 1951 and St. John's University Law School in 1956. He had an accomplished and successful legal career as an expert in tax and corporate matters. Jim started his career in private practice in New York City, moved on to the New Haven Railroad Company as Tax Counsel, and then with the IRS in Washington, DC. In 1966, the family moved from Washington to Needham, MA, where Jim worked in the legal department for John Hancock Insurance, Co. He retired from John Hancock in 1992 as the Vice President for Tax. Between college and law school, Jim served as a 2nd Lieutenant in the 27th Infantry Regiment during the Korean War from 1951 to 1953. He was awarded the Purple Heart for injuries received in combat, along with the Korean Service Medal, UN Service Ribbon, and Combat Infantry Badge. After his discharge from active duty, Jim continued his military service in the US Army Reserve, retiring in 1974 at the rank of Major. Indicative of Jim's character, he advocated tirelessly to ensure the men he served with were afforded the proper recognition for their service and valor. Jim was an accomplished squash and pool player, and not-so-accomplished (but committed) golfer. He was well known for his irreverent sense of humor, love for a good party, and devotion to his dogs. Jim was a loyal friend to many, maintaining strong friendships with people of every stage of his life from grade school to the Needham Senior Center and everything in between. He is survived by his three children Ellen (husband Marc), Jim, and Paul (wife Anstice), and his three grandchildren Trevor, Charlotte and Miles. Jim is also survived by his committed and beloved partner Martha Litle, with whom he spent his final years. Visiting Hours at the George F. Doherty & Sons Funeral Home, 1305 Highland Ave., NEEDHAM, Thursday, Nov. 19 from 4:00-7:00pm. Relatives and friends kindly invited. Please follow all COVID-19 guidelines. A private Funeral Mass will be held in St. Bartholomew's Church, Needham followed by interment in St. Mary's Cemetery, Needham. In lieu of flowers or other gifts, the family asks that donations be made to the Pine Street Inn, where Jim was an active volunteer for the less fortunate, or St. Bartholomew's Church in Needham, where he volunteered and the family were longtime parishioners, or the Delaware Valley Golden Retriever Rescue Group, dvgrr.org Online guestbook and directions at gfdoherty.com George F. Doherty & Sons Needham 781-444-0687

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Published in Boston Globe from Nov. 17 to Nov. 18, 2020.
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3 entries
November 29, 2020
I was so sorry hear about Jim's passing. My wife and I were very fortunate to have Jim and Alice for neighbors for over 20 years. Both were very special people and will be missed.
John S Wong
November 18, 2020
Maj. Kenefick,
Sir, I would just like to say thank you for your years of dedicated service and sacrifice for our Country when you served with the U.S. Army and USAR-especially when you served in Korea fighting the communist North Koreans and Chinese as a member the 27th Infantry-the “Wolfhounds” of the 25th Infantry Division. And to your Family and loved ones, I wish to extend my deepest sympathy.
Mike Casey
November 17, 2020
It was a pleasure to work with Jim when he & Alice moved from Harris Ave, and later, for Jim's move to Wellesley. He did have a great sense of humor, and was an interesting man to talk with. He talked often about his children. I'm very glad I got to meet him.
Mary Parker
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