Obituary for John S. Foley
John S. Foley, 99, of 44 Birchwood Lane, Lenox died on Wednesday May 3, 2017 surrounded by his family at Treasure Coast Hospice in Stuart, Florida.
Born in Pittsfield on June 7, 1917, he was the son of Michael L. and Grace A. Dooley Foley. While in high school he worked helping to deliver milk for Wehry Farm for .25 cents a day. John graduated from Pittsfield High School in June 1936. He was a member of the 1936 basketball team that went to the semi-finals of the New England Tournament in Burlington, VT. He was selected a star defenseman on the All Western MA and All Eagle Berkshire County teams. He also played basketball for St. Theresa’s Holy Name League in Father Matthews Association.
After graduation he went to work at General Electric in July of 1936. When he got laid off from General Electric he drove cross country with several friends to Spokane, Washington where he boarded the Empress Canada in Vancouver and sailed to Hawaii. In Hawaii he worked at the Star Bulletin Newspaper. He got recalled to a welding job at General Electric and took a ship from Hawaii to Los Angeles then a train, cross country. He worked at General Electric until he got drafted into the Navy in 1944. He was assigned to the USS Mount Olympus as a radar man, and was in three major battles in the Philippines.
John returned to work at General Electric in TK (Tank Shop) as a welder. While working at General Electric he was very active in the Local 255 I.U.E. He served in many different capacities in the union, steward, Chief shop steward and grievance board. He retired from General Electric in 1981 with 40 years of service.
He was a member of the GE Quarter Century and Pensioner’s Club/I.U.E 255. While living in Lanesborough he served on the Democratic Committee.
John was an avid Boston Red Sox fan. He was able to attend Red Sox games in Florida this spring. He also enjoyed watching the New England Patriots, Duke Basketball and Notre Dame Football. He enjoyed going to the Senior Center after swimming at the YMCA and his Wednesday breakfast club at Joanne’s. He always enjoyed getting an ice cream cone.
John married the late Constance B. Keeler at St. Charles Church on July 4, 1941. John and Constance lived in Lanesborough and ran the Pontoosuc Lake Motel until 1973 when they moved to Lenox. Constance passed away on January 13, 2004. He leaves one son Michael J. Foley of Pittsfield, three daughters Marguerite F. LeBlanc of Port St. Lucie, Florida, Elizabeth J. Foley of Lenox and Susan M. Wood and husband Warren of Pittsfield. He also leaves two granddaughters Amy Miklas (David) of Port St. Lucie, Florida and Kristen M. Prew and Richard of Hinsdale, MA. John leaves four great granddaughters Kate Miklas, Emily Miklas, Kaylee Prew and Riley Prew.
John was predeceased by his siblings, Grace E. Foley, Frances Gibney, Robert Foley, Helen Louise Sharkey, George Foley, and Anne Foley. He was also predeceased by a son-in-law Gerald H. LeBlanc and two good friends George Crane and Anthony Castranova.
FUNERAL NOTICE: A Liturgy of Christian burial to celebrate the life of John Foley will take place at St. Charles Church at the convenience of the family. Burial will be in St. Joseph’s Cemetery. Donations may be made to the Donor’s Choice through the Flynn & Dagnoli - Bencivenga Funeral Home 5 Elm St. Pittsfield, MA 01201 . To add to the Book of Memories, please visit www.flynndagnolifuneralhomes.com.