ROCKPORT — John S. Gillies, Jr., 83, of Rockport and formerly of Westford, husband of the late Jean (Hume) Gillies, passed away peacefully on Sunday, Sept. 19, 2010 in the Seacoast Nursing & Rehabilitation Center in Gloucester.
Born in Boston, on May 8, 1927, John (Jack) was the son of the late John S. and Marion (Smith) Gillies Sr. of Rockport. He graduated from Governor Dummer Academy (now known as The Governor's Academy) in Byfield, with the Class of 1945. He then enlisted with the U.S. Navy for a year before continuing his studies and graduating from Amherst College with the Class of 1950.
John met his wife Jean in Rockport and married soon after college graduation. They lived in New Jersey and Connecticut before settling down in Andover with their three children. After a short move to Colorado, they moved the family back to Westford, where they lived for 48 years. John and Jean traveled the world extensively, seeing China, Russia, Europe, to name a few, and hitting all of the United States except Alaska and Hawaii.
Classical and jazz music were his interests, but the Big Band sound was his favorite. When he was in high school he was in a band and was an exceptional saxophone player, which carried into his college years as well. Using the education and tools his grandfather taught him, he loved to build and design things such as the house that his sister Ruth lives in, and doll houses for his grandchildren. He worked for the Aerospace Industry as a contract administrator for many years.
John is survived by his three children: daughters, Janet Foley and her husband James, Susan Catalogna and her husband Mark, all of North Andover; his son, Stephen Gillies and his wife Janet of Carlisle; four grandchildren, Kristine Catalogna of Portland, Maine, Jennifer Catalogna of Boston, Jenna and John Gillies of Carlisle; one great-grandchild, Sadie Catalogna of Portland, Maine; one sister, Ruth Gillies of Rockport; and many step-grandchildren, nieces, nephews and cousins.
ARRANGEMENTS: A memorial service will be held on Sunday, Sept. 26, at 2 p.m., in the First Congregational Church, 12 School St., Rockport. Family and friends are cordially invited. In keeping with John's wishes, there are no visiting hours, and burial will be held privately. Kindly omit flowers, and contributions may be made in his memory to a charity of one's choice. Arrangements are made by the Burgess & Mackey Funeral Home, 201 Main St., Rockport. Online condolences may be given at www.greelyfuneralhome.com.