Obituary of Ann Holmquest
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Ann Holmquest, a Legislative Aid, passed away after a short illness on Friday, March 12, 2021. She was 86 years old. Ann was born in Leominster and grew up in Fitchburg. Ann was a woman well ahead of her times. After graduating from Fitchburg High School, she left Massachusetts for Washington D.C. to attend Georgetown Visitation. It might have been at Georgetown where she caught the political bug. After initiating correspondence with the newly elected president, she and some of her girlfriends were invited to President Dwight Eisenhower’s inauguration and breakfast with the President at the White House in the following days. She finished her education at Marymount University in Virginia with a bachelor’s degree in history. She went to work at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and it was there where she met an aspiring graduate student, Charles Holmquest. They were married in 1957 and spent their first year of marriage in Dallas, Texas before Chuck was assigned to Hanscom Air Force Base in Lexington. They purchased a modest home in Burlington and made multiple additions as they filled it with five children. She was a mother first, who also enjoyed local, state, and national politics. She supported candidates at all levels of government and was a longtime delegate for the State Republican Party. She spent six years as a legislative aid to her good friend State Representative Mary Ann Brenton. Her candor and outgoing persona helped her make wonderful connections with elected officials and their staff, including more than just a few Democrats. She was a supporter of Governor William Weld in the early days of his campaign; a friend to Senator Edward Brooke; and fortunate to meet George H. W. Bush. She attended political rallies, fundraisers, galas, and countless other events making connections, advocating agendas, enjoying being a part of the political system.
Ann was naturally outgoing and made people immediately feel comfortable. The expression “her door was always open” often refers to children’s friends, relatives, and neighbors. For Ann, it included acquaintances who became friends from all over the world, teenagers who were having troubles at home, and anyone else she or one of her children brought home. She loved hosting dinners, holding intellectual conversations, and being there at the door to greet her grandchildren and welcome them to her home always for a joy filled visit. She loved sports. An athletic child, Ann learned to play golf with her father John and enjoyed skiing with Jack and their friends at Wachusett Mountain before it had lifts. She taught her husband, Chuck, a Texas native and all her children how to ski. There were endless family trips to Attitash Mountain in North Conway to ski with Jack and later a vacation home in Lincoln, NH close to Loon Mountain. She was also a competitive tennis player, giving her children a love for the sport. She was a devoted wife to her life’s adventure partner Chuck. The two were always on the move, traveling the world, making friends all along the way or driving to their children’s and grandchildren’s sports, concerts, performances, and academic ceremonies. She was a fun and loving mother to her children and grandchildren and had a unique and special relationship with each one. She was a fantastic role model for her family showing them to take chances, avoid biases, express what you believe in, share love and kindness with everyone you meet, and enjoy life!
Ann was the beloved wife of the late Charles A. “Chuck” Holmquest. She was the loving mother of Christopher & his wife Kathleen of Marshfield; Tracy Grella & her husband Richard of Foxborough; Julie Finn & her husband Thomas of Westwood; Kirk & his wife Suzanne of Hingham; and Ellen Walsh & her husband Mark of N. Andover. She was the sister of the late John “Jack” Coffey. She was the proud grandmother of Brian Holmquest & his partner Jennifer Thompson of Taipei; Sean Holmquest & his husband Jean Yves Bernard of Brooklyn, NY; Kyra Holmquest of Somerville & her fiancée Rian Rossetti; Anders Holmquest of Hingham; Katrina Grella of Manchester, NH; Samantha Finn & Alexandra Finn of Westwood; and Kiley Palumbo & Madison Palumbo of N. Andover.
Visiting hours will be held at the Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn St., Burlington (exit 34 off Rt. 128/95, Woburn side) on Wednesday, March 17 from 10-11:30 a.m. Followed by a mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Margaret Church in St. Veronica Parish, www.stveronicama.org, 111 Winn Street, Burlington at noon. Services will conclude with a burial in Pine Haven Cemetery, Burlington. Memorials in Ann’s name may be made to Stonebridge Employee Fund, 50 Greenleaf Way, Burlington, MA 01803. For directions, obituary, video tribute, and livestream of funeral mass see www.sullivanfuneralhome.net
Edward V. Sullivan
43 Winn Street
Burlington, MA 01803
Ph: (781) 272-0050