John J. “Jack” Donovan, Jr., Major, Army National Guard of Massachusetts, Retired, age 84

of Rockland

John J. “Jack” Donovan, Jr., Major, Army National Guard of Massachusetts, Retired, age 84

Rockland, John J. “Jack” Donovan, Jr., Major, Army National Guard of Massachusetts, Retired, age 84, of Rockland, formerly of Quincy, died peacefully Sunday, December 30, 2018 at South Shore Hospital, surrounded by his loving family. He had courageously battled cancer for over three years.

Jack was born in Dorchester to the late John J. and Catherine V. (Lehane) Donovan. He was raised in Dorchester and South Boston and graduated from Quincy High School, Class of 1953. He lived in Rockland for ten years, previously living in Quincy for over forty years. He and his wife were longtime winter residents in Aruba and Lauderdale by the Sea in Florida and cherished their many friendships there.

Jack graduated from the Massachusetts Military Academy in 1958. In 1965, he began his service as a First Lieutenant in the Army National Guard of Massachusetts. He served as a former commanding officer as well as in various staff positions with the 109th Signal Battalion at the Quincy Armory. He retired as a Major in 1994 with twenty-eight years of service.

He was a member of Teamsters Local #1 Boston Mailers Union for sixty years and worked at the Boston Globe and Boston Herald.

Jack was a member of the Cyril P. Morrisette American Legion Post #294 in Quincy and the Quincy Lodge of Elks. He was also a baseball coach with Quincy Little League for many years.

He was proud of his Irish heritage. Jack enjoyed attending the annual Saint Patrick’s Day Breakfast in South Boston with his lifelong friend, George Wong.

Jack was devoted to his family and was known as a warm, friendly, and outgoing gentleman.

Beloved husband for fifty-nine years of Janet M. (Sullivan) Donovan.

Devoted father of John K. “Jack” Donovan and his fiancée Joni Carroll of Whitman, Brian D. Donovan of Quincy.

Loving brother of James Donovan, Richard Donovan, both of Braintree, and the late Janet Volpe.

He is also survived by many nieces and nephews.

Visiting Hours will be held at the Sweeney Brothers Home for Funerals, 1 Independence Avenue, Quincy on Thursday, January 3rd from 4-8 p.m. Relatives and friends are invited to attend. Funeral Services will be conducted at the funeral home on Friday at 11 a.m. Interment, with military honors, at Blue Hill Cemetery in Braintree.

The Donovan family would like to acknowledge Marianne and the staff at the Dana-Farber Cancer Center in Weymouth for their compassionate care.

For those who wish, donations in Jack’s memory may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675-8517.


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  • Jack and Brian and Mrs Donovan… I’m terribly sorry to hear of Mr Donovan’s passing. He was a great guy, we all loved him and all have great memories of him from growing up.

  • Our hearts go out to his family and friends.. were so sorry for your loss.
    You are all in our thoughts & prayers🙏

  • My deepest sympathies to you all.
    Godspeed Mr. Donovan
    Susan Ricciarelli

  • Mrs Donovan, J.K and Brian,

    Many cherished memories of Jack Sr going back only 40 yrs. Can’t even begin to start. I pray that God will sustain you as you honor Jack’s legacy. May his memories always stay alive and fresh keeping him close by.

    God bless,

    Arthur and Lynda Gott

  • Brian I’m very sorry for your loss.

  • We are very sorry for your loss, Jack was such a nice person and a good neighbor! Our prayers are with Him and with you also.

  • Dear Janet and family, we are so sorry to hear of Jack’s passing. Dick will be stopping
    by to pay his respects, but I am unable to join him. We will miss seeing Jack’s smile as he came with you to our Village events. Keep in mind that your neighbors are here for you. Our love and prayers are with you.