READING, Mass. - George Edward McGarity, 88, of Reading, MA and Fryeburg, ME, died surrounded by family on November 24th after a brief illness. Born the youngest of five children to Julia Shea of Kenmare, Ireland and Thomas F. McGarity of Somerville, MA, George was raised in Dorchester by his beloved sister Marguerite and her husband Tim Holland. After graduating from the Dorchester High School for Boys, class of '48, he worked a variety of jobs including delivering milk for Hood, and then enlisted in the United States Marine Corps. George was a very proud Marine, and served in Korea as a sergeant in "Dog" Company, 2nd Battalion, 1st Marines (D/2/1). He was wounded during combat in the "Punchbowl Valley," serving as squad leader in action that would earn him the Purple Heart and send him to Japan for months of recuperation in a military hospital before discharge. After serving in Korea, George started his family with his first wife Marilyn (O'Brien). They had four children and built their lives first in Cambridge and later in Reading, MA, where George remained throughout the rest of his life. He began his career as a policeman, working his way from patrolman with the Metropolitan District Commission (MDC) to sergeant and later detective lieutenant inspector with the Massachusetts State Police, graduating with honors from North Shore Community College along the way. He earned the respect and friendship of colleagues and adversaries alike, often befriending reluctant witnesses or paroled criminals who found George more friend than foe. After his career in law enforcement he continued his connections with associates through his private investigation practice. A self-described "trained observer," his lifetime of service was inspirational as well as productive. The early 1980s would bring the next phase of George's life as he and his second wife Rebecca Longley embarked upon their lives together. In his 50s, George took up downhill skiing, long-distance biking, and a love of sailing as he and Becky traveled extensively throughout the Caribbean and across the world. Whether at home or abroad, he was often found reading a good book and drinking a beer, and the crossword was usually mastered by midmorning. His laugh was infectious, his story-telling hilarious, and his ever-present whistling the sound of contentment. George was a proud Marine, dedicated policeman, devoted father, husband, grandfather and friend. When once asked what he collected, he replied, "friends." He leaves countless behind, joins others, and what remains is a legacy of accomplishment, love, and humor. George was predeceased by son Michael and daughter Denise. He is survived by wife Rebecca of Reading, daughter Lynne Perry and husband Jeff of Scarborough, ME, daughter Christine Mackenzie and husband Don of Cape Elizabeth, ME, daughter-in-law Anette and husband Gary Lipman of Ft. Lee, NJ, grandchildren Sam, Elyse, Julia, Joshua, George, Lily and Michael, great-grandchildren Tanner and Emilia, and many nieces and nephews. Visiting hours will be from 4-8 PM on Thursday, November 29th at Douglass, Edgerly & Bessom Funeral Home, 25 Sanborn St., Reading MA. A funeral service will be held at the same location at 11:00 AM on Friday, November 30th followed by internment at Wood End Cemetery at 40 Franklin St., Reading.For directions and online guest book visit johnbdouglassfuneralhome.com
In lieu of flowers, donations to the Disabled American Veterans
National Service Office JFK Federal Building Room 1575B Government CenterBoston, MA 02203 would be appreciated.
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Published by Portland Press Herald/Maine Sunday Telegram on Nov. 27, 2018.