Francis D. Gibbons, 85
Shrewsbury - Francis D. Gibbons, 85, of Shrewsbury, died Wednesday, October 19, 2016 at his home after a brief illness.
He leaves his wife, Mary M. (Foley) Fryer Gibbons; four daughters, Kathleen A. Preston of Brattleboro, VT, Ann Gibbons-Smith and her husband James Smith of Worcester, Donna M. Gibbons and her husband Mark Peterson of Apple Valley, MN, and Dian A. Birch of Chatham; two stepsons, Thomas Francis Fryer and his wife Elizabeth of Arlington, VA and Timothy J. Fryer and his wife Kathryn of Worcester; nine grandchildren, Shannon R. Preston, Ryan Britton and her husband Lee Britton, Rosemary, Kathleen and Elizabeth Smith, Patrick and Sarah Gibbons-Peterson, and Courtney and Thomas Birch. His first wife Louise A. (Martin) Gibbons died in 1998. His sister Patricia Higgins of Indianapolis, IN also predeceased him.
Francis was born in Worcester, son of Dewey F. and Sarah W. (Waters) Gibbons. He has lived in Shrewsbury for more than 20 years. He also spent summers at his home in Harwich Port and many winters at his home in Sarasota, FL.
He attended St. Peter's Grammar School and St. Peter's High School in Worcester and Hebron Academy in Maine. He was a graduate of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, where he was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity. After college, he served in the U.S. Army including a deployment to West Germany.
After his military service, Francis began a long insurance career working for the Frederick L. O'Brien Insurance Agency, along with the Russell D. Ockerbloom Insurance Agency and the Robert T. Curran Insurance Agency, all of which he later purchased and became the O'Brien & Gibbons Insurance Agency on Highland St. in Worcester. He has remained associated with the agency until his passing. He was also president of the Francis D. Gibbons Realty Company and served on the Commonwealth Automobile Reinsurers of Boston.
Francis was the treasurer of the political campaign committee of the late Worcester Congressman Joseph D. Early. He was a longtime member of Pleasant Valley Country Club in Sutton, serving as president of the golf club for seven years and as treasurer for the annual PGA tournaments. Francis was a member of the Alhambra Council #88. He was active with the Emerald Club and received the club's Shillelagh Award. Francis had a long and deep involvement with many community organizations and charities in the Worcester area. He was a "Worcester legend."
Gibby enjoyed playing golf and also belonged to Cummaquid Golf Club on Cape Cod, Palm Aire Country Club and Gator Creek Golf Club in Sarasota. He was also a member of the former Metropolitan Diners Club in Worcester.
Gibby loved the company of his countless friends. He enjoyed watching the summer beach rituals of Cape Codders from the deck of his home in Harwich Port. Most importantly, he loved his family, especially cheering on the activities and achievements of his grandchildren.
Calling hours are Sunday, October 23, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Athy Memorial Home, 111 Lancaster St., Worcester. The funeral Mass will be Monday, October 24, at 10 a.m. at St. John's Church, 40 Temple St., Worcester. Burial will follow in St. John's Cemetery, Worcester.
In lieu of flowers, donations in Francis's memory may be made to the Children's Glaucoma Foundation, 2 Longfellow Place, Suite 201, Boston, MA 02114 (childrensglaucomafoundation.org
), the Food Allergy Research and Education, 7925 Jones Beach Drive, Suite 1100, McLean, VA 22101 (foodallergy.org
), or St. John's Food for the Poor Program, 44 Temple St., Worcester, MA 01604.