Edward F. Dow of Buzzards Bay died peacefully, in his sleep, May 13, 2013 surrounded by his family at the age of 89. He is survived by his beloved wife of 66 years, Mary Eleanor (Gillis) He was born in Framingham, MA., one of twelve children of the late Perley & Elsie (Bassett) Dow. Elsie was a direct descendent of the Mayflower and Perley, a direct descendent of the second ship, the Fortune. Edward attended Framingham public schools, followed by his enlistment in the United States Navy (Pacific Fleet) in 1943. Four of his brothers enlisted, on the same day, in various branches of the military. Ed served in WWII on the USS San...
Edward F. Dow of Buzzards Bay died peacefully, in his sleep, May 13, 2013 surrounded by his family at the age of 89.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 66 years, Mary Eleanor (Gillis)
He was born in Framingham, MA., one of twelve children of the late Perley & Elsie (Bassett) Dow.
Elsie was a direct descendent of the Mayflower and Perley, a direct descendent of the second ship, the Fortune.
Edward attended Framingham public schools, followed by his enlistment in the United States Navy (Pacific Fleet) in 1943. Four of his brothers enlisted, on the same day, in various branches of the military.
Ed served in WWII on the USS San Pablo and was honorable discharged in 1946. He received numerous honors including the Purple Heart Medal, the Philippine Liberation Medal and the Philippine Presidential Unit Citation.
He worked as a carpenter at Commonwealth Gas Company for 35 years, retiring May 1982. During his career, he and his wife "Ellie" owned and operated the Farmers Exchange, built two homes on the Cape and ran countless neighborhood parties. He loved fishing, clamming, gardening and being with family and friends.
He was an active life member of the American Legion Post 188 of Sandwich, Aptuxcet VFW Post 5988 of Bourne and the Falmouth Lodge of Elks #2380.
His enthusiasm for life will be long remembered at St Margaret's church, for his assistance with ushering and Beano.
Edward is also survived by his sister (Gladys Gibbs), six children and their spouses (Julie Witzel, Jean Dow, Joan Stone, Marilyn Stirk, Edward Dow Jr. Eleanor Chiccarelli), ten grandchildren, six great grandchildren, two great-great grandchildren and many nieces and nephews. He is now joining one predeceased grandchild.
Visitation Wednesday May 15th, 4pm-7pm, at Nickerson-Bourne Funeral Home, 40 MacArthur Blvd, Bourne
Memorial Service Thursday May 16th, 9:30am, at St. Margaret's Church at 141 Main St, Buzzards Bay
Burial to follow at the Massachusetts National Cemetery (Off Connery Avenue) in Bourne, MA 02532
Donations can be made to Hospice foundations and the Department of Veterans Affairs, who work with homeless and needy veterans.
The following Eulogy was read by Mr. Dow's son, Edward F. Dow, Jr. :
89 years old – can you believe it!! What a run. And he didn't waste a minute of it. First of all, on behalf of my family I would like to thank you all for coming today. I know it means a lot to my Dad and our family to have you here with us. It's hard to sum up the essence of his life in just a few sentences. But I can say without a doubt he loved his wife and family very deeply. He always made us feel loved. He and mom prepared us for life with the tools to succeed in a harsh world. He was also a jokester – couldn't resist picking on all he came in contact with.
His profession was a carpenter. He loved working with wood. And he was the hardest worker I ever met in my life. He and my mom even dug the cellar hole for their first house, then laid the foundation brick, before moving the shell of an old house onto the spot and building it into the house my sisters and I grew up in. With 5 sisters and no brothers I wish he put in that second bathroom though. Every time they had another kid he added another room, and moved the front door – again. When Mom got home she never knew which side of the house the front door would be on.
My Dad and Mom bought a feed and grain store called the Farmers Exchange. Dad and I would unload 20 ton train cars of grain – in 100 pound bags – sometimes in as little as 5 hours – using 2 wheel dollies moving 6 100 pound sacks of grain at a time. Even though I was young and strong at the time, he could out work me and anyone else who worked with us. He unloaded the majority of the grain. But it was not all work – we also would put a float in the annual town parade. He was very creative, sometimes turning the truck into a chuck wagon with wooden horses driven by my brother-in-law Bill, Once we even had live animals on the float. One time he dressed me up as a big rooster to walk the parade – on the 4th of July, I lost about 10 pounds that day. My wife wants me to wear that outfit now so I could drop a few pounds. Those days were great fun.
When we were young he used to setup a stage out back of our house. Us kids, and whichever friends we could suck in – would put on a show for the neighbors every summer to raise money to buy penny candy when we summered on Cape Cod. He and my mother loved the Cape. He would clam and quahog any chance he got. Fishing whenever he could get the engine to start on that old boat. Eventually he built a house on the cape to retire to.
He worked at the Commonwealth Gas Company as a carpenter for 33 years before retiring to the cape full time at 59 ½ years old. He eventually built a house on the water where he lived with my mom for the rest of his life. They enjoyed watching the sunsets together just about every night. He never tired of looking out at the bay. It was here looking out over the water where he passed away peacefully in his sleep surround by his family. As he read his last rights Father Roger marveled at Dads view and remarked that Dad had his own little piece of heaven right here.
One of his biggest attributes and something he encouraged was volunteering. He felt a deep sense of duty to help his fellow man. He started this at a young age when he convinced his mom and dad to sign for him to join the Navy when he was under age to serve with his brothers in WW II. He was wounded in combat in the Pacific while serving onboard the San Pablo, which was a refueling ship for PT boats and seaplanes. He referred to it as a floating bomb. He and we were proud of his service years and he attended the reunions with his shipmates as often as he could.
That volunteerism never stopped. He loved to do the collections at mass and worked on bingo here at St. Margaret's over the years when he was healthy. He also worked Bingo for the VFW post here in Bourne, and the American Legion Post in Sandwich. He volunteered to work any functions where the veterans were being honored. Serving them meals and handing out gifts. Many of the veterans were much younger than him. He enjoyed raising money for the American Legion Post 188 baseball team. He loved hanging with his buddies, Will, Ray, Paul, and the others who volunteer for the good of others at the Post. And we thank them for all the commradery and love and respect they showed him over the years.
So if you are thinking of volunteering for community service or service to your country – you do my dad proud.
Okay – on to parties, He was into parties. We had theme parties every year. Mad hatter parties, roaring 20's, 2001 a space oddity, 50's, western, great movies, show tunes, any excuse for a party. With Dad making all kinds of props and decorations, like rockets, old cars, a western village complete with jail – which I seemed to spent a lot of time in. Great times had by all.
I could go on and – but I can feel him poking me with the darn cane and telling me to sit down and stop talking in church. So I'll let him go and join his family members, shipmates, friends in heaven, and little Christina.
I'm sure he'll find plenty of people to fish with, and to needle, and no doubt he'll be trying to become the unequivocal pool champion of heaven.
Always thinking of others even to the end when he was the one needing help. Every morning in the hospital I would come early and bring him ice cream. And each day he would say – " make sure you take care of your mother – she's a good woman". He wanted to make sure she would be okay before he left.
He lived life to the fullest He partied hardy He gave of himself and he loved deeply. He touched your lives and you touched his – and both of you are richer for it. Thank You Dad, You did a good job, we're all prepared. You can stand down and rest. We'll take it from here.