NORTH ATTLEBORO - John F. “Jack” McGowan, 87 passed away peacefully Thursday, January 24th, 2019 at the Madonna Manor Nursing Home in North Attleboro after a long battle with Parkinson’s Disease.
Jack was born on December 26, 1931, he was the son of Edgar Cullen McGowan and Elizabeth (Carroll) McGowan formerly of Broad Street, North Attleboro. He was raised in North Attleboro attended North Attleboro schools graduating from the high school in 1949 where he competed for his beloved Red Rocketeers on their football team. He attended prep school at Marianapolis Prep in Thompson, CT and then followed his father and brother into the Armed Service. Specifically, Jack chose to join the US Navy and was assigned to Submarine duty serving time on the USS Sablefish Submarine.
While in the US Navy, Jack married the former Mary-Ellen Rhind and subsequently settled in the Attleboro area. Shortly thereafter, Jack began what turned out to be a 30 plus year career with The New England Telephone Company specializing in corporate communications and worked for NE Telephone & Telegraph in their Providence office before accepting a promotion to be the New England Sales Manager headquartered in Boston. After retiring early from the Telephone company in 1986, he began a long relationship as a communication consultant with the Radisson Hotel chain in Boston.
A longtime resident of Boston, Chelsea and Charlestown, MA he was the first resident to move into the Charlestown Naval Yard Condominium Complex and was selected to be part of the ribbon cutting ceremony commemorating the opening of the housing complex. He also resided in Quechee, VT for a number of years.
A lifelong sports fan, Jack was a loyal follower of all of the Boston pro and college sports teams, an expert skier and became an avid long-distance runner at the age of 40, participating in numerous road races of varying distances culminating in his crowning running achievement of competing and finishing in the New York Marathon as well as his favorite sports event, The Boston Marathon in 1977.
Later in life, Jack was consistently seen cheering on his children and grandchildren as they participated in various athletic teams for North Attleboro and Bishop Feehan High Schools.
He was the former husband of the late Mary-Ellen (Rhind) McGowan and is survived by sons William F. McGowan and his wife Betsy of Brighton, MA, Timothy M. McGowan and his wife Susan of North Attleboro, daughter Nancy McGowan of Pawtucket, RI, son-in-law David Mason of Keene, NH, five grandchildren; Ryan McGowan and his wife Jennifer of Everett, MA, Justin McGowan of Portsmouth, RI, Patrick McGowan and his wife Ashley of Reading, MA; Kylie Mason of Washington, DC and Maura Mason of Keene, NH and four great grandchildren, Michaela McGowan and Jonathan McGowan of Everett, MA and Andrew McGowan and Christopher McGowan of Reading, MA, his sister-in-law Connie McGowan of Ketchum, Idaho as well as four nieces and one nephew.
Jack was predeceased by his oldest daughter, Colleen Ann (McGowan) Mason, his older brother US Army Colonel Edgar C. McGowan, and sisters, Claire Cameron and Marie “Cunnie” McGowan.
Visiting hours on Tuesday, January 29, 2019 from 4-7 p.m. at Sperry & McHoul Funeral Home, 15 Grove Street, North Attleboro. A funeral service with U.S. Navy Honors will be held at the conclusion of visiting hours in the funeral home at 7 p.m. Burial will be held privately at a later date.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the “Colleen Mason Scholarship Fund” c/o Mascoma Savings Bank, 255 West Street, Keene, NH 03431.