Obituary: George Ashley Stack, 81
Jun 10, 2015 01:00PM
● By Kieran Gilman
Tewksbury, MA — Ashley, as he was known, grew up in New Bedford, MA, the son of an Irishman, who died when he was just nine months old, and Portuguese mother, Mary Bandera of the Azores. Born January 2, 1934, he liked to claim the best birth date ever: 1234! At age seventeen, Ashley joined the U.S. Navy based in Key West, FL, but never saw a day of battle in the Korean War. A self-proclaimed military man, two years later he joined the U.S. Air Force and was stationed in San Antonio, TX. He was a HR processor by day and movie aficionado by night, especially when John Wayne was featured.
?He met Keiko Kuroda through mutual friends and became pen pals. In 1966, he went to Osaka, Japan, married her and brought her back to the States. Ashley and Keiko were one year shy of their 50th wedding anniversary.
?They started a family in 1967 with the birth of Ken Edward, middle named after Edward Kennedy, who helped secure Keiko's visa into the U.S. Six years later, Michael Ashley was born, followed by Andrew Ashley, two years later. They raised their family on South Street in Tewksbury, MA.
Ashley worked for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts employment office for thirty-seven years as a claims adjudicator.
Ashley is predeceased by his half sister, Thomasina. He is survived by two half brothers John Quail of No. Dartmouth, MA and Peter Quail of Naples, FL, his beloved wife Keiko, Ken and Karen Stack of Andover, MA, Mike and Beth Stack of Lowell, MA and Andrew and Angela Stack of Pelham, NH, along with five grandchildren "the apples of his eye": Colby, Katherine, Isabella, Olivia and Sabrina. He will be laid to rest in Tewksbury Cemetery on June 11 in a private family ceremony. Ashley requested that his granddaughter Katherine play “Taps” and for poetry to be read.
In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute.