Obituary of Robert Graham Galgay
Robert Graham Galgay, a retired department manager at Sears in Burlington, entered into rest on December 23, 2023, at 79 years old. Diagnosed with terminal cancer 26 years ago and given just 6 months to live, he survived to enjoy 25 incredible years before being challenged by the ramifications of aggressive cancer treatments. Still, he was able to see his sons marry wonderful women, see the births of his grandchildren, and be a part of their lives as they grew up, and considered every day a gift.
Robert was born and raised in Cambridge. He was one of six children born to Frances and Eleanor Galgay. At 17 he decided to enlist in the Army. He served for three years during the early years of the Vietnam War. He held the rank of Specialist 4th Class and was a member of the 101st Airborne Division and Company A of the Second Battalion, 501st Infantry of the Third US Army. He was the recipient of the Parachutist Badge, Expert Badge, and Marksman Badge.
After his military service, he went to work in the shoe department at Sears department store in Boston. When Sears opened at the newly built Burlington Mall, he transferred to that store and eventually became manager of the shoe department, then manager of all the men’s departments. Robert was a natural salesperson. He had a warm and welcoming personality and had the patience and skill to help customers find the best choice and value. Robert was well respected by his coworkers and employees for being an extremely fair manager and mentor, with a great sense of humor.
Robert loved to be involved and worked hard. He was an umpire for Little League Baseball in Burlington. He was a member of the Billerica Elks and the Burlington American Legion. He loved the comradery shared during his yearly men’s retreat at the West End House Camp in Maine. He also loved the pro and college Boston sports teams and was a diehard Patriots fan during their good and not so good years. He was a longtime member of Temple Shalom Emeth in Burlington. He was a past president of the temple, served on the House Committee, and joined the temple brotherhood.
Robert was the beloved husband of Harriet (Ross) Galgay for 57 years. They met at a party and he swept her off her feet. They were married a few short years later and settled in Burlington in 1973. They made a loving team as they raised their sons and created wonderful memories as a family. He loved music, was the first on the dance floor and enjoyed a good game of cards and laughs with his friends. He battled cancer and survived. As a father, he was a wonderful role model to his sons. He was so proud of how they had grown up to be strong men, marry wonderful women, and became caring and loving fathers to their children. He was blessed to be a part of his grandchildren’s lives. Family and friends will remember Robert as a fun person that others wanted to be around. He had a great sense of humor, was genuinely concerned about others, and always was there for anyone who needed help.
Robert was the proud father of Daniel Galgay and his wife Dawn of Nashua, NH, and Chad & his wife Sandi of Pelham, NH. Proud grandfather of Jacob, Quinlan, Jordyn, Taylor Galgay. Brother of Francis Galgay & his wife Eileen of Carver, MA, Lois Galgay & her partner Len Rao of Billerica, MA Linda Gonzales & her husband Louis of Arkansas, the late Paul Galgay & his surviving wife Faye of Braintree, and the late Patricia O’Connor. Robert was also survived by many nieces, nephews, and friends.
A graveside service will be held at Pine Haven Cemetery, 84 Bedford St., Burlington, on Thursday, December 28 at Noon. Memorials in Robert’s name may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, www.woundedwarriorproject.org, P.O. Box 758516, Topeka, KS, 66675-8516 or Temple Shalom Emeth, 16 Lexington Street, Burlington, MA, 10803.
For online guestbook and video tribute see www.sullivanfuneralhome.net
Edward V. Sullivan
43 Winn Street
Burlington, MA 01803
Ph: (781) 272-0050