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Obituary of Helen R. Donovan
Peabody, MA - Helen Rita (Ryan) Donovan, 92, beloved wife of the late John H. Donovan Jr., passed away on Thursday, December 31, 2020 following a lengthy illness at Brooksby Village in Peabody, MA. Born in Boston, she was the daughter of the late James and Helen (Crawford) Ryan. She attended Fitton High School in East Boston, MA graduating class of 1945. Helen had been employed by New England Telephone Company for 25 years, retiring as a manager of real estate operations in Boston, MA. A long-time resident of Peabody, MA, Helen was an active member as well as a Eucharistic Minister of St. John the Baptist Church in Peabody, MA. Most important to Helen was enjoying and spending time with her loving family and friends, along with her residence in West Barnstable, MA that she called “paradise” for over 15 years. She will be missed by all who knew her. Surviving her is her son, John H. “Jack” Donovan III, and his wife Charlene of Mashpee, MA, her four daughters, Paula Lowe and her husband Stephen of Peabody, MA, Charlene Scangas and her husband George of Lee, NH, Mary Geist and her husband Ken of McPherson, KS, and Julie Malcolm and her husband Tim of Windham, NH. Helen’s fourteen grandchildren, Ryan Donovan and his wife Aurica of Merion Station, PA, John H. Donovan IV and his wife Cari of Fair Oaks Ranch, TX, Michael Donovan and his wife Mary of Fairfield, CT, Matthew Donovan and his wife Erica of Little Silver, NJ, Stephen Lowe and his wife Alexis of Mooresville, NC, Christopher Lowe of Sudbury, MA, Jacqueline Scangas and her fiancé Michael Wilkins of Waltham, MA, Alexis Crellin and her husband Edward of Topsfield, MA, Jillian Scangas and her fiancé Norman Yuen of Boxford, MA, Katherine Geist of Spring Hill, KS, Daniel Geist of McPherson, KS, Meghan Lane and her husband Matthew of Weare, NH, Lyndsey DeCosta and her significant other Marshall Berry of Marstons Mills, MA, Timothy DeCosta of Windham, NH, and eleven great grandchildren, her sister-in-law E. Julie Donovan, S.N.D., Worcester, MA, and several nieces and nephews. In addition to her husband and her parents, Helen was predeceased by her two brothers-in-law, Simon Donovan and David I. Donovan, S.J. and her sister-in-law, Eileen Donovan. The family would like to thank the staff of Brooksby Village Memory Care Unit, second and third floor staff, and her hospice team from Care Dimensions who were with her in her final moments when family could not be there due to Covid restrictions. Arrangements: Viewing will be private due to the current pandemic. Family and friends are invited to attend the funeral mass that will be held at St. John the Baptist Church, 17 Chestnut St., Peabody, MA on Friday, January 8, 2021 at 11 a.m. All attendees are required to wear a mask and adhere to social distancing guidelines. The funeral mass will be video live streamed at www.stjohnspeabody.org for anyone unable to attend. Assisting the family with the arrangements is the Conway, Cahill-Brodeur Funeral Home, 82 Lynn St., Peabody, MA. A private graveside service will be held at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, MA. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy and contributions may be made in Helen’s memory to Care Dimensions, 75 Sylvan St., Danvers, MA 01923 or to the Crohn’s & Colitis Foundation, P.O. Box 1245, Albert Lea, MN 56007.
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