Eaton & Mackay Funeral Home
465 Centre St
Newton, MA 02458
Mass of Christian Burial
Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019
12:00 PM
Our Lady Help of Christians Church
573 Washington St.
Newton, MA
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Celebration of Life
Saturday, Nov. 16, 2019
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
The Social Restaurant
320 Washington Street
Newton Corner, MA
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BURKE, Peter J. Of Newtonville and Little Compton, RI on Oct 30, 2019. He was 81 years old. Beloved husband of Marion (Mattoon) Burke, loving father of Jay C. Burke and his wife Teresa of Framingham and grandfather of Fiona and Sebastian Burke. Brother of Caroline Venusti and her husband Robert of Little Compton, RI. Peter was raised in Lexington. He was fiercely loyal to the people and institutions that helped shape him. He put a premium on preserving friendships and relationships, especially those at the Belmont Hill School and the College of the Holy Cross. He was blessed to spend 50 years of marriage with the love of his life, Marion, whom he admired and adored. They shared a passion for travel and took family trips to Europe and Costa Rica. Peter loved the land and gardening. He worked for many years for Clappers in West Newton and Larchmont Engineering as a landscape lighting and irrigation designer. His idea of leisure activity was to mount his trusty tractor and spend hours mowing his acres of grass in Little Compton. His goal was to have a passerby stop and ask if this was the local golf course. Among his talents, he was widely known to be unparalleled in his ability to converse with and relate to everyone he encountered. He truly represented the saying, "There are no strangers. Only friends you've yet to meet." Most of all, Peter adored his family, friends and "the fellas." He was unfailingly proud of his son, Jay. They were each other's heroes. He so loved his daughter-in-law, Teresa. After meeting her for the first time, Peter said, "Jay doesn't know it yet, but he's a goner." Granddaughter Fiona lit up his life. Every birthday and Christmas, Peter selected a charm for her bracelet that represented some part of her life. Grandson Sebi was a never-ending source of joy to Peter. They were masters of silly humor. While few of his friends knew the origin of Peter's patriarchal nickname, "Ofa," none would be really surprised to learn of its derivation: indeed, "old fart." He will be sorely missed, but he will live forever in our hearts and lives. His Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Sat., Nov 16 at 12 pm in Our Lady Help of Christians Church, 573 Washington St., Newton. A gathering to Celebrate his Life will be held from 1-4 pm at The Social Restaurant, 320 Washington Street, Newton Corner, at the Crown Plaza Hotel. In lieu of flowers, a donation in memory of Peter may be made to the Sakonnet Preservation Association, PO Box 945, Little Compton, RI 02837 sakonnetpreservation.org or to the Pan Mass Challenge at PMC, 77 4th Avenue, Needham, MA 02494 pmc.org To share a memory of Peter, please visit www.eatonandmackay.com Eaton & Mackay Funeral Home Newton Corner 617-244-2034
Published in The Boston Globe on Nov. 10, 2019
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