Paul W. Christopher, 72, of Pittsfield, MA passed away unexpectedly, yet peacefully at his home on Friday, 9 April 2021. Father - Devoted Family Member -Musician-Veteran. Paul was an inspiration to so many and a great American.
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Upon graduating from Pittsfield High School, he joined the U.S. Navy in 1968 and was assigned to duty on the destroyers USS Cony (DD-508) and USS Warrington (DD-843) with missions to track Soviet submarines and ships in the North Atlantic. He frequently recounted his time on the high seas, often in austere and dangerous conditions encountering Soviet warships, which they would follow for days as a Cold War deterrence and to gain intelligence on the Soviet fleet. Throughout his naval time he would meet many shipmates who would remain lifelong friends.
Following his military service he returned to Pittsfield and went to work as a laborer on the Bear Swamp hydroelectric power project along the Deerfield River, during which time he attended Berkshire Community College to become a computer programmer analyst and began raising a family. He worked for many years as a programmer at General Electric in Pittsfield, and then later in life at the state and community colleges until his retirement in 2016. He was a musician throughout his life, master of the horns, playing in drum corps and many local bands. Most notable was his time with the band Cold Duck that was a legend from the ‘70s through the early ‘80s playing throughout Western Mass. In more recent years he formed the local Red Knights Drum and Bugle Corps helping local youth to learn music and perform throughout New England. His joy was his time with family, his many friends and sharing his love and knowledge of music — it is certain that he continues to strike up the band with those he is now reunited with.
Paul leaves behind his sons Eric Christopher (Jennifer) of Washington, D.C., Dean Christopher of Pittsfield, Ma., Ryan Christopher (Odette) of Hartford, Ct., his brother Jerry Christopher (Terri) of Lanesborough, Ma., his grandchildren Justin Christopher of Pittsfield, Casey Christopher of Castle Rock, Co., Alyssa Christopher of Pittsfield, Adriana and Aiden Christopher of Pittsfield, a great grandson Jordan Pero Christopher of Pittsfield, a nephew Jesse Christopher of Lanesborough, a niece Carrie Christopher (Ed) of Boston, Ma. and his former wife, Nancy Roots of Pittsfield. He is preceded by his parents William and Viola Liccardi Christopher and his loving sister Ann (Pam).
A Liturgy of Christian Burial for Paul William Christopher will be celebrated Wednesday morning April 14, 2021 at 9:00 AM at St. Joseph Church in Pittsfield, MA. Burial with military honors will follow in St. Joseph Cemetery, Pittsfield, MA. Memorial donations are suggested for Soldier On, 290 Merrill Rd. Pittsfield, MA. 01201 or through the Flynn & Dagnoli-Bencivenga Funeral Home, 5 Elm St. Pittsfield, MA. To add to the Book of Memories, please visit www.flynndagnolifuneralhomes.com.