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JOSEPH F. GARGAN


1930 - 2017
JOSEPH F. GARGAN Obituary
GARGAN, Joseph F. "Joe" 87, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, December 12, 2017 in Lansdowne, VA. Formerly of Hyannis Port, MA, Joe was born February 16, 1930 to Joseph and Mary Agnes (Fitzgerald) Gargan in Boston, MA.

Raised in Lowell, MA, Joe was an avid horseback rider. His father, a skilled polo player, taught him to ride at a very young age and Joe often spoke with fondness of riding an Irish Cobb through the countryside of Middleburg, VA when his father was based in Washington, DC during the war.

Joe was also an able sailor, a passion that he developed while spending summers in Hyannis Port with his mother's sister, Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy and husband Joseph P. Kennedy. Joe loved the sea and spent many happy days sailing on Nantucket Sound and fiercely competing in Wianno Senior regattas with his cousin Teddy.

He was also passionate about his alma mater Georgetown Preparatory School where he was a boarder from 1942-48. He cherished his Jesuit education and developed many lifelong friendships there. And because his father was working for the War Department in Washington, DC, he was able to spend many treasured weekends with him.

He followed in his father's footsteps and enrolled in the University of Notre Dame, where he received his undergraduate (1952) and law (1955) degrees. He was a proud alumnus and avid Irish football fan, and was rarely without his Notre Dame hat. It was at Notre Dame where he met his wife of 63 years, Betty Hurstel, who he married in 1955.

After becoming a member of the Massachusetts bar in 1956, he worked as a trial lawyer at Badger, Pratt, Doyle & Badger until he took a leave of absence to join Jack Kennedy's 1960 presidential campaign. He served as an advance man and discovered his passion for campaigning.

Joe was appointed First Assistant U.S. Attorney for the District of Massachusetts under Arthur Garrity in June 1961. From then until 1967, he shifted between practicing law and working on Ted Kennedy's Senate campaigns in 1962 and 1964.

By 1967, Joe had returned to Badger, Pratt, Doyle & Badger; however, at Ted's request, he took over as chairman of Bobby Kennedy's presidential campaign. After Bobby was assassinated in 1968, Joe returned to private practice and eventually became a founding partner of Gargan, Harrington, Markham & Wall. He later served as a member of the MA Board of Appeal. Joe continued to practice law until 2013.

Joe was dedicated to helping those who suffer from alcohol addiction and substance abuse. He was also a devout Catholic and deeply committed to his faith.

Joe is survived by his wife, Betty; his two sisters, Mary Jo Clasby of Waterford, VT and Ann Gargan King of Braintree, MA; and his three children, Terri Wheeler of Bluemont, VA, Joe Gargan and wife Susan of Middleburg, VA, and Tom Gargan of Arlington, VA. He was also a proud grandfather to Joey and John Gargan.

Visiting hours will be from 5-7 PM on Monday, December 18, 2017 at the Doane Beal & Ames Funeral Home, 160 West Main Street, HYANNIS, MA 02601.

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, December 19, 2017 at Our Lady of Victory Church, 230 S Main St., Centerville, MA 02632. A private burial will take place at St. Joseph Cemetery in West Roxbury. For online guestbook visit

www.doanebealames.com
Published in The Boston Globe on Dec. 15, 2017
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