KEENE - Eugene E. Gaffey, 93, of Keene, passed away with his devoted wife by his side on March 27, 2018 at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, MA after a period of declining health.
He was born on July 27, 1924 in Medford, MA, the son of J. Raymond and Olive (Craig) Gaffey. He attended Phillips Academy Andover and Medford High School, graduating with the Class of 1944.
After high school, Eugene served in the United States Army. He was a Corporal in World War II serving as a Medic and a Second Lieutenant in the Korean War serving as a Harbor Master.
Upon honorable discharge from the Army, Eugene attended Yale University where he studied Economics and received his Bachelor's Degree in 1950. He worked for many years in the insurance industry, first in New York City for Mutual of Omaha, and later as the head of the Accident and Health Department at Peerless Insurance in Keene, from which he retired.
Eugene settled in Hinsdale and later in Keene. He was the municipal court judge in Hinsdale for 40 years. Upon his retirement from the bench in 1994, he was the last remaining municipal court judge in NH, as well as the last judge without a law degree. He was Hinsdale's Town Moderator, the Chairman of the School Board and a member of the Fire Department. Eugene served as Chairman of the Board of Directors for Cheshire County Savings Bank, and was involved through their transformation to TD Bank.
He held many memberships and roles within his community throughout the years. He was the President of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity at Yale; a charter member of the Hinsdale chapter of the Knights of Columbus; a lifetime member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks in Brattleboro, VT and the American Legion in Keene. He also found time to serve on the Board of Directors for the Samaritans and was a Justice of the Peace, marrying many local couples.
Eugene played the baritone horn for several bands including the Keene American Legion Band, Hinsdale Community Band and the Temple Town Band. He also enjoyed playing the piano.
In his retirement, Eugene worked for First Student, formerly Laidlaw, as a bus driver. He very much enjoyed getting to know the children on his route and they reciprocated. He also served as a Cheshire County Bail Commissioner.
A devout Catholic, Eugene was an active parishioner at St. Joseph Church in Hinsdale and at St. Bernard Church in Keene.
Eugene will be dearly missed by his wife of 15 years: Linda (Edwards) Gaffey of Keene, NH; daughter: Virginia Sullivan and her husband Joseph of Swanzey; grandchildren: Meghan Sullivan and her husband Patrick Belica of Washington, DC and Briana Sullivan Radetsky and her husband Alex of New York, NY; great-grandchildren: Harold Belica, Mabel Radetsky and Margaret Belica; step-children: Stephanie Gilbert and her husband Dennis of Wilton, and Timothy Foster and his wife Danna of Dahlonega, GA; step-grandchildren: Kelly Gilbert of Peterborough, Jeremy Gilbert of Wilton, Nicholas Foster of Seattle, WA, and Colin Foster of Macon, GA.
He is predeceased by his first wife Elizabeth (Weeks) Gaffey; sister: Brenda Gaffey; and brother: J. Raymond Gaffey, Jr.
SERVICES: Family and friends are invited to call at Fletcher Funeral Home, 33 Marlboro Street, Keene, NH on Friday, April 6, 2018 from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm. A Mass of Christian burial will take place at St. Bernard Church, 185 Main Street, Keene, NH on Saturday, April 7 at 10:00 am. Burial will follow immediately at Monadnock View Cemetery, Park Ave., Keene, NH.
While flowers will gladly be accepted, memorial donations may be made in Eugene E. Gaffey's name to St. Joseph Catholic Church in Hinsdale: Mary, Queen of Peace Parish, 161 Main Street, Keene, NH 03431 or to the Music Department at St. Joseph Regional School, 92 Wilson Street, Keene, NH 03431.
Fletcher Funeral Home and Cremation Services of Keene, NH has been entrusted with the arrangements. To express condolences or to share a memory of Eugene, please visit www.FletcherFuneralHome.com.