Visionary, Philanthropist and a True Leader and Friend to the Town of Winthrop
George C. Costonis passed away from cardiac arrest on November 24 in a long-term care facility in Jupiter, Florida at the age of 92. George was born in Winthrop where he continued to live , married, raised a family, and impacted the town and his friends through his philanthropy and businesses until much later in life when he moved to Lehigh Acres, Florida.
Upon graduating from Winthrop High School in 1946, George launched his extraordinary career as a person deeply committed to his family’s well being; a business man of extraordinary leadership and influence within the town of Winthrop; a philanthropist who was more than willing to share his success and stories with others in the spirit of good citizenship and as a sportsman who enjoyed promoting and sponsoring events and causes with and for his business associates, friends and family.
George was predeceased by his parents, Arthur and Sylvia Costonis. He is survived by his children: Elizabeth St.Claire and her husband, Randy, Kevin Costonis, Chris Costonis, Stephanie Costonis and Maria Travis; his grandchildren: Monique St. Claire, Chantal St. Claire, KC Costonis, Jacklyn Costonis and Christina Costonis and beautiful greatgrandchildren. He is also survived by his siblings: Johann Lee, Sylvia Favaloro and her husband, Cosimo, Arthur Costonis and his wife, Ricki, Anthony Costonis and his wife, Dorothy and John Costonis and his wife, Susan. George will always be fondly remembered by his many nieces and nephews. George was predeceased by his sisters, Anne Fuccione and Lillian Costonis.
The family also wants to acknowledge George’s three Florida Angels, Caretakers: Joy Garofalo, AnnaRubio and Judy Gates.
George started his first entrepreneurial venture – selling fruits, vegetables and produce in an open backed produce truck called “George’s Fruit Bowl.” He then moved on to establish Modern Decorators, Inc. a firm engaged in retail, commercial and industrial painting. The company grew to become one of the largest employers in the Town during the mid-50s to the late 1980’s. During this period George started a general construction company and devoted much of his activity toidentify and fund several major real estate development projects in the Town of Winthrop andthe surrounding area including apartment buildings, hotels, single community residences and RV Parks, to name but a few.
One of his major accomplishments was the introduction of the very first condominium buildingt o be built in the Town of Winthrop and indeed, in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. As a ‘first mover’ . . . in the early 1950’s . . . when condominium law was first being developed, George’s vision was greeted with skepticism by the Town Fathers and in particular the Zoning Board. George had to make the case that condo living could make a huge difference to the community in terms of increased valuations of real estate property, accompanying new tax revenues within Winthrop as well as the stimulation of additional economic activity within the Town. It is a vision that became a reality —and today the community of Winthrop has been a prime beneficiary of these efforts, Even through this whirlwind of activity, George always made time and was quite willing to share his experiences within the community both in formal and informal ways. As a business owner and employer, George both inspired and encouraged several of his former employees to start their own businesses which helped to launch many successful careers.
As a “give back guy,” George mobilized friends, family and concerned citizens of the community to help fund many initiatives to improve the athletic programs in the Town including funding the start of the Winthrop High School Hockey Program as well as the initial construction of the Winthrop Little League Baseball field next to the golf course. As an avid sportsman, George sponsored several informal fun trips and events including Stanley Cup trips to Montreal to root for the Boston Bruins; annual trips to the NFL Super Bowls complimented by a week of golf in Florida with several members of the Winthrop Golf Club. This tradition remains alive today. Red Sox tickets were always available for distribution. These were fantastic times and events which are fondly remembered by those of us who were lucky enough to participate.
Indeed, George will always be most remembered as a great friend, who spent a lifetime impacting the lives of all the people who had a chance to get to know hm. Everywhere he went, people were drawn to his can-do attitude, quick wit, kindness, generosity, and willingness to talk for hours or have an intellectual debate on almost any topic.
Indeed, the Town of Winthrop lost a true leader and friend. We will all miss his presence in our daily lives.
Given the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic, a private memorial service will be held by the family with a celebration of George’s life deferred for a future date in New England this summer.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in George’s name to Winthrop Charities, 28 Thornton Street, Winthrop, MA 02152 where the donations will be used by the Sylvia Costonis Charitable Trust to support local organizations and philanthropic events in the Town.
Member of Winthrop Golf Club, Winthrop Elks and Winthrop Yacht Club
Thomas R. Lally, 73, of Winthrop and Delray Beach, FL, passed away on November 24.
Thomas was a U. S. Air Force Veteran serving from 1964 to1968. Prior to his retirement, he was the Director of Information Systems for the UniFirst Corporation. Thomas was a member of the Winthrop Golf Club, Life Member of the Winthrop Lodge of Elks #1078 and the Winthrop Yacht Club.
Thomas was the beloved husband of Alice A. (Daly) Lally. Born in Woburn, he was the cherished son of the late Patrick J. and Jean (Sullivan) Lally, the devoted father of Christopher T. Lally of Winthrop and Patrick J. Lally of Athens, GA. He was the dear brother of Patricia Beane and her husband, Ron of Woburn, William Lally and his wife. Jeanne of Woburn, Joyce Gray and her husband, Kevin of Woburn, Joseph Lally and his wife, Maureen of Nashua, NH, John Lally and his wife, Joan of Woburn, Susan Ginivan and her husband, Paul of Woburn and the late Michael Lally of Woburn. Thomas is also survived by many nieces and nephews.
Funeral arrangements were by the Maurice W. Kirby Funeral Home, 210 Winthrop St. Winthrop. A Funeral Mass was celebrated on Monday, November 30, in St. John the Evangelist Church-Winthrop. Interment was in Winthrop Cemetery (Belle Isle Section). Donations in his memory can be made to the Dana
Farber Cancer Institute/Jimmy Fund, 450 Brookline Ave., Boston, MA. 02215. To sign his guestbook, please visit our website at www.mauricekirbyfh.com
Devout Catholic and Longtime Worshiper at St. John the Evangelist Church
Dorothy (Sullivan) Duyon, 92, passed away on November 30 at the North End
Rehabilitation & Healthcare Center in Boston. Dorothy was born in Chelsea and was a graduate of St. Rose High School. Before her retirement, Dorothy worked for many years at the Telephone Workers’ Cooperative Bank in Boston. After retirement she enjoyed travelling and spending time with her family.
Dorothy was a devout Catholic and a longtime worshiper at St. John the Evangelist Church in Winthrop. She lived in Winthrop for most of her married life and loved the beach and her wonderful friends and neighbors here.
She was predeceased in 2016 by the love of her life, George, after 65 years of marriage as well as her siblings: Daniel Sullivan, Timothy Sullivan, Mary Toomey, and Helen Hawthorne.
Dorothy was the devoted mother of Kevin Duyon and his wife, Paula of Londonderry, NH, Mary Bitetti and her late husband, Sam of East Falmouth and Jack Duyon and his wife, Lisa of Winthrop; adored grandmother of Rory, Hayley and Mackenzie Duyon, Sara, Sam and Susan Bitetti and Ryan and Timothy Duyon and the loving great-grandmother of Will, Brooke, Kevin, Madelyn, George, and Sophie.
At the request of the family, Dorothy’s funeral services will be private. Funeral arrangements are by the Maurice W. Kirby Funeral Home, 210 Winthrop St. Winthrop. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to St. John the Evangelist Church, 320 Winthrop St., Winthrop, MA 02152 or the Winthrop Council on Aging, Winthrop Town Hall, 1 Metcalf Square, Winthrop, MA 02152. To sign her guestbook, please visit our website at www.mauricekirbyfh.com
US Airways Retiree
Joseph M. McCarthy of Winthrop passed away at home on November 28. He was 85 years old.
Born in Tralee, County Kerry, Ireland, the beloved son of the late Ellen McCarthy, after completing school, he worked for years at a pub in Listowel before making the trip to America. He first settled in Philadelphia where he began working for US Airways (then Allegheny Airlines), and eventually made his way to Winthrop. At U.S. Airways, he made innumerable, lifelong friends and retired after a distinguished career.
He was devoted not just to his own family, but to his friends and their families, many of whom knew him affectionately as “Uncle Joe.” He also had unwavering loves for Ireland, travel, and photography. From Spain, to Japan, to the shores and towns of his beloved Ireland, he trekked around the world and skillfully catalogued his travels in photograph.
He was the devoted brother of the late Maureen McDonagh (McCarthy) and her former husband, Michael James McDonagh; loving uncle and godfather of Martine McDonagh, Michael Joseph McDonagh and Myles McDonagh; dear friend to many, including his best friend, Paul Whelan.
Family and friends are cordially invited to attend the visitation on Friday, December 4 from 9 to 11 a.m. at the Caggiano-O’Maley-Frazier Funeral Home, 147 Winthrop St., Winthrop followed by a Funeral Mass in St. John the Evangelist Church, 320 Winthrop St., Winthrop at 11:30 a.m. Committal will be private.
*Attendees must wear masks & maintain social distancing in the Funeral Home and Church*
To sign the online guestbook, go to www.caggianofuneralhome.com.
Estelle Anne Johnson
She Brought Great Joy to Her Family Friends and Everyone She Touched
Estelle Anne Johnson, 92, of Winthrop died on December 1.
After graduating from Winthrop High School in 1944, she spent most of her career working as an insurance underwriter at Commercial Union Insurance Company in Boston. She brought great joy to, and will be greatly missed by, her family, friends, and everyone whom she touched.
She was the daughter of the late Estelle Marie (Casey) Copeman and John W. Copeman of East Boston, beloved wife of the late Edward Conant Johnson, beloved sister of the late John W. Copeman, Jr., loving mother of Thomas E. Johnson and his wife, Deborah, Nancy A. DeGregorio and her husband, Mark and Kevin P. Johnson. She is also survived by her three loving grandchildren: Meredith Johnson, Mark DeGregorio Jr. and Jessica Johnson and her two great grandchildren, Giuliana and Dominic DeGregorio. In addition, Estelle is survived by many nieces and nephews.
A private interment will be held at Winthrop Cemetery Monday, December 7. A Celebration of Life Service at St. John the Evangelist Church, Winthrop will occur in 2021 at a date to be determined.
In lieu of flowers, a donation in Estelle’s name to the organization is preferred to Mass Society for Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (MSPCA) @ www.mspca.org/donate-now/.
To sign the online guestbook, go to www.caggianofuneralhome.com.
Arrangements under the direction of the Caggiano-O’Maley-Frazier Funeral Home, Winthrop.
Avid Traveler, Loved Winthrop Beach and Family Gatherings
Connie J. Fahey, 70, of Winthrop passed away suddenly at ho me on November 27.
Born in Chelsea, the cherished daughter of the late George E. and Genevieve G. “Gen” (Guiney) Fahey Sr. , Connie was an avid traveler. She enjoyed many cruises and traveling to different destinations across the world. Connie loved the beach and enjoyed her summers at the Winthrop Beach. Most importantly was gathering with family and friends, especially with her nieces, nephews, great-nieces and great-nephews.
Connie was the dear sister of George E. Fahey Jr. and his wife, Helen and Patricia A. Burke and her husband, Joseph, all of Saugus; loving aunt of George Fahey III and his wife, Aimee, Michael Fahey and his wife, Jen, Colleen and Brian Fahey, Kathleen Bondi and her husband, Joseph and Joseph Burke Jr. and his wife, Allison and great-aunt of Maggie, Robbie, Kyle, Molly, Cameron, Ada, Maisie and Isla.
Funeral Services for Connie will be private. Donations in her memory can be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital 501 St. Jude Place Memphis, TN. 38105 or to the Shriners Hospital for Children 51 Blossom St. Boston, MA. 02114.