John “Jack” Coleman Conley, 97, of Osterville, MA, yet another of America’s disappearing “greatest generation”, died peacefully at home on March 28, 2019, surrounded by his loving family. He leaves his beloved wife of forty-five years, Margot Heyden Conley.
Jack was born to the late John C. and Anna J. (Kline) Conley in Belmont, MA in 1921. He graduated from St. Dominic Academy in Waverly, MA. His college career at Boston University was interrupted by the Second World War when he enlisted in the Marines on January 8, 1942. He served in the Pacific Theater for two and one half years. He was honorably discharged in September of 1945. He was awarded two Bronze Stars and several additional medals. He then attended Bentley College and was employed at Zurbach Steel Corporation for over forty-five years. He rose to Senior Vice President and General Manager of Zurbach’s Connecticut operation.
He retired to the Cape in 1987. He loved all sports, particularly skiing which he enjoyed until 85 years young. He also loved golf, the Red Sox and the Patriots.
He was a former member of the Waterbury’s Men’s Club, Country Club of Waterbury and Oyster Harbors Club in Osterville.
Jack had a special interest in his children and grandchildren. He kept in touch with all of them on a regular basis with his wonderful letters.
In addition to his wife Margot, he is survived by four sons, John C. Conley III of Westerly, RI, Michael Patrick Conley of Tucson, AZ, Mark Edward Conley (Meina) of Mill Creek, WA, James Thomas Conley (Shelley) of Plain City, Ohio, four daughters, Maureen Conley of Jackson, WY, Patricia Williams (Edward) of Myrtle Beach, SC, Eileen Ballman (David) of St. Augustine, FL, Nancy Cooke (Patrick) of Orlando, FL and three stepdaughters, Cheryl (English) O’Leary (Andrew), Caryn (English) Palazzo (Robert) and Debra (English) Palazzo (Philip).
Together Margot and Jack have seventeen grandchildren, Michelle Simione, Jennifer Gough, Benjamin Klee, Christine McCardle, Rebecca Williams, Jacob Ballman, Joshua Ballman, Mariah Conley, Madeline Conley, Michael Conley, Christopher Cooke, Erin O’Leary Bisceglia, Andrew O’Leary III, Kaleigh Palazzo, Alexis Palazzo, Alyssa Palazzo and Robert Palazzo, Jr. Blessed with six great-grandchildren, Rhiannon Simione, Giovanna Simione, Erica Weisnick, Michael Weisnick, Kathryn McCardle and Rachel Huse.
He will be fondly remembered by his extended family, two sisters- in-law Judy Fenney and her husband Nick, of Highland Beach, FL and Jill Heyden Berryman of Wallingford, CT and brother-in-law Jon Heyden and his wife Janice of Moultonboro, NH and many nieces and nephews. Jack was predeceased by his siblings, Frances Conley, Gertrude Leavitt, Charles Conley, Mary Wascom, Rev. Coleman (Edward) Conley S.S.C.C., Richard Conley, his first wife Mary (Boland) Conley and his stepson Brad K. English.
Jack carried a lantern throughout his entire life, he never dropped it or allowed it to extinguish. He carried this light to illuminate life’s path to all of us who followed behind him. Although he is no longer with us, his light and legacy will shine here on earth and in heaven forever.
A Funeral will be held at St. Bridget Church, Cheshire, CT on Friday, April 26th at 10:30 am. Burial will follow at Hillside Cemetery, Cheshire, CT.
A Memorial Mass will be held at Our Lady of the Assumption Church, Osterville, on Friday, May 3rd at 11:30 am.
In lieu of flowers, kindly contribute to The Salvation Army of Hyannis, PO Box 369, Hyannis, MA 02601, St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, PO Box 50, Memphis, TN 38101-9929 or The Osterville Library, Main St., Osterville, MA 02655.