TEWKSBURY - Mr. John Francis Mitchell (Poppa), age 88, a former Navy Aviation Airman and retired letter-carrier for the U.S. Postal Service, died peacefully at his Tewksbury home on Thursday morning, September 10, surrounded by his loving family, after a brief illness. He was the beloved husband of Gertrude T. (Girvan) Mitchell, with whom he would have celebrated sixty-five years of marriage in October.
John was born in the Readville section of Boston, one of five children of the late John P. and Leoda (Morin) Mitchell, and was raised there. He graduated from Hyde Park High School, and enlisted into the U.S. Navy. He served in the Philippines as an Airborne Radioman, and earned the WWII Victory, American Theater, and Asiatic Pacific Theater Medals.
Upon his honorable discharge, he became a letter-carrier for the U.S.P.S. at the Harvard Square, Cambridge, Post Office. He retired in 1986, and continued his working career for an additional twenty years as a cart barn manager at the Winchester Country Club.
The Mitchells moved to Tewksbury in 1964, where they raised their four daughters. He was also a communicant of St. William’s Parish in Tewksbury.
John volunteered tirelessly for the Tewksbury Little League program for over twenty-five years. He was an avid and accomplished golfer, and had traveled to historic and internationally renowned golf courses including St. Andrew’s, Pebble Beach, and TPC at Sawgrass.
Besides his wife, he leaves four daughters, Kathleen Mitchell of Hudson, NH, Joanne Mitchell of Charlotte, NC, Karen Lessard and her husband Michael of Dunbarton, NH, and Maureen Klangos and her husband Charles of Lowell; a sister, Marjorie Murphy of Hyde Park; a brother, William J. Mitchell of Pembroke; twelve grandchildren, Kerry Kimball and her husband Brett, Tabitha Torre and her husband Larry, John and Michelle Dufour, and David Dufour and his finance Jessica, Nicole Coulombe and her husband Mike, Brandon Lessard and his girlfriend Lee Ann, Cameron Lessard, Aimee Sullivan and her husband Ryan, Corrie Stronach, Charleen and Christopher Klangos; eleven great grandchildren, Claire, Jacob, Taylor, Jayden, Mya, John, Wyatt, Sadie, Mackenzie, Julia, and Ava; many nieces and nephews, and was predeceased by his brothers, Thomas F. Mitchell and Francis M. Mitchell.
A Memorial Funeral Mass will be celebrated Thursday, Sept. 17, at 10:30 am at The Oblate Fathers Novitiate, relatives and friends respectfully invited. At his request visiting hours are omitted. Memorials to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, KS 66675, or visit woundedwarriorproject.org Arrangements were through the Tewksbury Funeral Home.