May 9, 1930 - November 25, 2016
Norwood, Massachusetts | Age 86
Daniel E. Burns, Jr., age 86, passed away peacefully in the Veterans Administration Hospital in Brockton, Massachusetts on Friday, November 25, 2016. Born in Boston, Massachusetts on May 9, 1930, he was the son of the late Daniel E. and Mary (Kiennally) Burns. He was raised in Brighton and attend Boston Public Schools. Dan graduated from Boston Technical High School and took a position with Stone and Webster Engineering in Boston, first as a messenger and later in the drafting room before working as a pipefitter. In 1950, Dan enlisted in the United States Air Force and proudly served his country during to Korean War. He was stationed at an Air Force Base in Rapid City, South Dakota, serving as a draftsman in the base engineer's office.
Dan married his wife, Marguerite Mary Flaherty, on May 11, 1952 and after his discharge from the Air Force, they made their home in Roslindale. Dan continued working as an apprentice pipefitter and used the G.I. Bill to begin taking classes at Northeastern University at night to earn his Bachelor's Degree. After becoming a journeyman pipefitter and recognizing the importance of education, he began teaching mathematics to the apprentice pipefitters at Boston Technical.
Dan and Peg settled in Norwood, Massachusetts in 1958, and Dan took an active role in his new community. He volunteered with the Norwood Nuggets Youth Hockey Program and as his children reached high school, Dan took an active position with the Norwood Boosters. He loved listening to band which led him to his volunteer work with the Parents Music Association at Norwood High School. Dan always found a way to work with the children in Norwood, he spent countless hours volunteering with kids who were not applying themselves in school at Norwood Hospital with a program called Health Adventures. He also gave back to his community as a whole, volunteering in the Emergency Room at Norwood Hospital and taking an important role in the planning and coordinating of Norwood Day.
Dan's career with Stone and Webster began to flourish, as he installed industrial control systems before earning the position of construction manager. The management position led to a lot of travel and with his wife and five children at home, it was very hard on him. He was recruited by Polaroid in 1970 and began working in their Cambridge office. After Polaroid built their coding and chemical facility in New Bedford, he was transferred there as a mechanical engineer. Dan retired in 1993 after 23 years of dedicated service. In his retirement, Dan and Peg enjoyed traveling the world together. As Peg was first generation from Ireland, they visited Ireland a total of five times, spending time in the Aran Islands and the coast where her father was from and Carna in County Connemara where her mother was from.
As a young man in his 20s, Dan developed his lifelong passion for sailing. He owned a sailboat for 35 years name the Mynish, after the Islands of Ireland where Peg was from. The Mynish was kept in Hingham Harbor and Dan would often sail into Boston Harbor to enjoy Castle Island. He noticed a sign on the island one day that stated "Volunteers Needed" and he quickly applied. Dan began giving tours of Castle Island on Thursday nights, Saturdays and Sundays. While giving a tour one day, he met a man who invited Dan to give tours at the State House. He spent five years giving tours of the State House one or two days a week until he was 85 years old.
Beloved husband of the late Marguerite Mary "Peg" (Flaherty) Burns.
Loving father of Paul F. Burns and his wife Suzanne of Wakefield, Linda M. Shannon and her husband Joseph of Sheridan, Arkansas, Daniel E. Burns and his partner Nina Mitra of Boston, Mary Burns of Beverly, and Carol A. Belliveau and her husband Scott of Northborough.
Cherished grandfather of Erin, Mary Kate, and Conor Burns, James Shannon, Lauren and Carl Ferri, and Michael Killian and Declan Belliveau.
Brother of Anne Marie Romano of Brighton and Edward "Harry" Burns of Walpole.
Also survived by many nieces, nephews, great nieces, and great nephews.
Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend Dan's Life Celebration on Tuesday, November 29, 2016 from 4-8 PM in the James H. Delaney & Son Funeral Home, 48 Common Street, Walpole. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated in Saint Catherine of Siena Church, 547 Washington Street (Route 1A) Norwood on Wednesday, November 30, 2016 at 9:00 AM. Interment will follow in Highland Cemetery in Norwood. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to: The Castle Island Association, P.O. Box 342, South Boston, MA 02127.