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Maurice F.'s Story

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Maurice Francis (Mo) Donovan, 86 years old, embarked on his final pilgrimage on February 28, 2017, while listening to his favorite Gregorian Chants. For 54 years Mo was the cherished husband of Jane Martin Donovan.
He was a first generation child of Irish parents. His mother was from Kilcusnin, Co. Kerry and his father from Ardfield, Co. Cork. Mo grew up in Roslindale and entered the Society of the Divine Word (SVD) Seminary at Miramar in Duxbury, Mass.
Mo met Jane at Boston College and they married in 1962 while he was teaching in Turners Falls, Mass.
Mo enjoyed 30 years teaching English at Lexington High School and then moved on to Bunker Hill Community College to students who wanted more than to meet a requirement. He then became the Director of Volunteers at Chelsea Human Services where he worked with the refugees and immigrants who inspired each other in the classroom and delighted him with their enthusiasm.
During most of this time he also gave his attention to his SVD family, editing and publishing a newsletter for the SVD alumni and becoming their voice around the world.
Mo raised his family in Melrose before moving to Newburyport twenty years ago. He is the father of Geoff and his wife, Jacquelaine Bartlett of Cleveland; Tim and his wife, Michelle Verfaillie of Ipswich; Vanessa Donovan Hale and her husband, Michael of Shrewsbury; and Rod and Lisa Donovan of Denver.
He is grandfather to Finn and Bella Donovan, who delighted him every day. Mo is survived by his younger brother, Patrick X. Donovan of Naples, Fla.
He was predeceased by his daughter, Julie; his parents, Pat and Mae (O’Connell) Donovan; as well as his siblings, Peggy, Jack, Jimmy and Billy.
Mo was passionate about democracy, human rights, injustice and fairness for all. He was active in many organizations including the Montague and Lexington Teacher’s Association, MTA, NEA, METCO, and the Melrose Human Rights Commission and many more too long to list. Mo was a staunch Democrat who cherished family, faith and his Irish heritage and carried it like a guerdon. He was a faithful member of the Immaculate Conception Parish and one of several founding members of the local chapter of Voice of the Faithful.
His Requiem Mass will be celebrated at Immaculate Conception Church, 42 Green Street, in Newburyport on Saturday, March 4, 2017, at 11:30 a.m.
Visitation will be held in the IC Parish Hall adjacent to the church at 10 a.m.
Please omit flowers. Donations may be sent to Divine Word Missionaries, Mirimar Retreat Center, 121 Parks Street, Box M, Duxbury, MA 02331. In his memory, please do a kind deed for an immigrant or refugee who needs a helping hand. This obituary was edited and approved by Mo.
Published on  March 1, 2017
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