Obituary of Donald A. McGowan
Donald A. McGowan, 91, of Burlington passed away peacefully with his loving daughter by his side, on Saturday, January 27, 2024, at the Blaire House in Tewksbury.
Donald was the son of the late Thomas G. and Josephine F. (Stapleton) McGowan and was educated in the Medford and Somerville School systems
Immediately following his High School graduation, Donald enlisted in the Navy and was deployed during the Korean War. While deployed, he earned the Good Conduct Medal and National Defense Medal. A few years after his honorable discharge, he met the love of his life Anna M. Aquilino, marriage and family quickly followed.
Not a day went by that his children did not feel his warmth and love. He wanted to be a part in both of his children’s lives and he was. Whether it was rooting on Stephen during a baseball game or taking Patti to figure skating or baton twirling practices, Donald was always there. His passion for baseball shone through as he coached his son’s little league teams and later became the president of the Burlington Baseball and Softball leagues as well as the Babe Ruth League. Notably, he extended his love for the game to inner-city Boston troubled children through a program that introduced them to the joys of baseball. He also Volunteered at CASA which was a program for troubled children who needed advocates in the court system.
He was a dedicated and cherished member of the IBM family, who’s 50-year career spanned the evolution of computers from the 1950’s to the present day. Beginning as an on-call computer repair technician, he climbed the ranks to become a respected Field Service Engineer. He was always able to provide for his family and bartended at the former Mama Leone’s in Boston when times were leaner.
Donald was also very proud of not only his Irish heritage, but his wife’s Italian heritage as well. He Emersed himself in Italian culture and enjoyed everything about Italy. Donald actively served as president of the Son's of Italy in Burlington, playfully recognized as the cooler-headed Irishman ensuring sound decisions for his Italian friends. Fluent in Italian, he generously shared his knowledge by teaching Italian at the Burlington Library and on Public Access Television for years.
His love for family was unparalleled. He enjoyed cherished moments while floating among the waves of the ocean with his beloved daughter Patricia, a memory she holds very dear. They would take turns napping while afloat, one would act as a look out for marine wildlife and ensure the other did not float too far out. Patricia and her dad referred to themselves as mermaids and you would never be able to get them out of the water, swimming was a joint passion, even in a pool. They enjoyed racing each other and sometimes Donald was gracious enough to allow Patti to win. Patricia describes her father as a man of great integrity, having a phenomenal work ethic, someone you could really count on, it was those qualities that gave Patricia the confidence to become a successful entrepreneur for over 30 years. Everything she learned; her father taught her. She will greatly miss playing cribbage and chess with him. Patrcia would find him many times in the back yard playing catch with her beloved brother Stephen amongst other neighbor friends. His family-oriented spirit extended to travel, where he explored museums across the country, making each journey a cherished experience for everyone.
Donald is survived by his loving wife of over 60 years, Anna M. (Aquilino) McGowan, of Burlington and his cherished daughter, Patrcia McGowan-Moynihan of Burlington who resides in Tyngsboro. He was the brother of David McGowan and his wife Donna of Arlington and Christine C. Costello of Methuen; he is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
He was predeceased by his loving son, Stephen O. McGowan who passed away in 2009 as well as a brother, Robert S. McGowan who passed away this past May.
Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend his funeral service on Saturday, February 3rd, at 4pm at the Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn St. Burlington. His Visiting hours will precede the funeral service from 1pm to 4pm. His graveside service with military honors will be Monday February 5, at 1pm at Pine Haven Cemetery, 84 Bedford St. Burlington. To view his memorial slideshow or to leave a condolence for his family please visit www.sullivanfuneralhome.net
Edward V. Sullivan
43 Winn Street
Burlington, MA 01803
Ph: (781) 272-0050