John Joseph Mitchell Jr., 78, of Canton, suddenly on March 28. Beloved husband of 51 years of Lorraine (Brophey) Mitchell, and son of the late John and Margaret Mitchell, Irish immigrants from Galway and Clare, respectively. Devoted father of Christopher Mitchell and wife Susan of Needham, Erin Guadagno and husband Alex of Westwood, and John Mitchell III (Jay) and wife Colleen of Westwood. Adoring and much adored Papa of Thomas, Patrick, Annie and Grace Mitchell; Liam and Alex Guadagno; and Kylie, John IV (Jack), Charlotte, Lucy and Mallory Mitchell. Brother of Bernard (Brian) Mitchell and wife Claire of Sandwich, Kathleen Butts and late husband Reg of Walpole, Mary (Peggy) Perry and husband Kenneth of Woburn, Kevin Mitchell and wife Ann of West Roxbury, and the late Thomas Mitchell and surviving wife Gloria Korta of Winchester. Brother-in-law of the late Richard Brophey and surviving wife Margaret of Pepperell. He is also survived by many loving nieces, nephews, and cousins, both in the US and in Ireland.
Born in Boston and raised in the Forest Hills neighborhood of Jamaica Plain, John was a proud graduate of Boston Latin School and Boston College. He served as a volunteer in VISTA and was a member of the Army Reserves. A Canton resident for 48 years, he was a former CCD Teacher at St. John the Evangelist in Canton, past President and longtime coach of Canton Little League, former baseball coach in the Cranberry League, and a lifelong learner and voracious reader.
Following a 30+ year career in medical sales, John threw his efforts into volunteerism: as an active member (and former President) of the St. Vincent de Paul Society at St. John’s, at Mass General working for Jim O’Connell at Boston Healthcare for the Homeless, as a driver for FISH of Canton, and as a substitute teacher at Brockton High School (“they don’t struggle to find subs at Weston High” was a common refrain), John’s volunteerism became a passion.
A passion surpassed only by his love for 11 grandchildren. Freezing hockey rinks, sweltering baseball fields, and dance recital halls without air conditioning were his most favored natural habitats. As was a summer home in Bourne’s Gray Gables neighborhood, where 11 children ages 2 through 12 congregated for large chunks of the summer just to be nearer to their beloved Papa.
In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the St. Vincent de Paul Society, 700 Washington Street, Canton, MA 02021.
While his passing was unrelated to COVID-19, services will be private due to current state regulations. However, the family encourages anyone with a memory of John to please share it at Legacy.com. A Memorial Mass and celebration of his life will be held at a later time. Arrangements by Pushard Family Funeral Home 210 Sherman Street, Canton.
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