OBITUARY: William J. “Bill” Kennedy, 91

Below is an obituary from Lane Funeral Home:

READING, MA — Kennedy, William J. (Bill), of Reading, a former 46 year resident of Winchester, died peacefully with his family by his side on February 22, 2021, one week shy of his 92nd birthday. He will be forever remembered for his kind nature, contagious smile, love for his family and a never-ending curiosity. He preferred to teach through his actions rather than words.

He enjoyed big family gatherings surrounded by his wife, four children, and twelve grandchildren, and loved anything water – fishing, sailing or just a ride to the beach. He especially loved watching a good storm rolling in over the water. A quiet, gentle, loving husband, father, grandfather and brother, he will be dearly missed.

The oldest of four sons born to Martin C. and Helen (King) Kennedy in Lowell, MA, he graduated from Keith Academy, Lowell and later Boston College Class of 1951. He relished being one of BC’s 50 year “Golden Eagle” alumni. Upon graduation from BC, Bill worked for The Dewey and Almy Chemical Company of Cambridge MA as a chemist for many years and ultimately moved to Polyvinyl Chemical Industries of Wilmington MA (now known as AstraZeneca). He was extremely proud of his work and he retired in 1996 after 28 rewarding years.

Bill was a member of the first parish council at St Eulalia Church of Winchester where he was a faithful parishioner for more than 40 years. A person who believed it was important to give back, he supported the CYO basketball program for many years. Bill enjoyed memberships at the Winchester Swim and Tennis Club and at the Winchester Boat Club where he served as Rear Commodore. Many happy days for Bill were spent on Mystic Lake as part of the race committee. In recent years he took to collecting and caring for orchids and would jump at the chance to attend the Boston Flower Show. He was most happy though with his family around him.

He leaves behind his beloved wife of 66 years, Mary (Jill Barrett) Kennedy, children Maryellen Kennedy and her husband Barry Gleason of Cape Elizabeth, ME, Mark and his wife Sheila Kennedy of Wilmington, MA, Maura and her husband Charlie Adams of Reading, MA and Matthew and his wife Kerri Kennedy of Londonderry, NH.

William is also survived by his twelve grandchildren Caroline, Maggie and Tom Gleason, Ryan, Colin and Timothy Kennedy, Catherine and Will Adams and Kathleen Garen, Colleen, Matthew Jr. and Michael Kennedy. William also leaves behind his brothers, Martin Kennedy of North Billerica, MA, Thomas Kennedy of Dover, NH., and Gerald Kennedy (deceased) formerly of Billerica, MA.

Due to COVID restrictions a private Mass of Christian burial was celebrated on February 26, 2021 at 11am at Saint Eulalia’s Church Winchester, MA.

The Interment will be at the Wildwood Cemetery, 34 Palmer St, Winchester, MA immediately following the funeral mass.

In lieu of flowers donations can be made in memory of William J Kennedy to the Home Base Program, 125 Nashua Street, Ste. 540, Boston, MA 02114 (online at or to the Reading Rotary Charitable Trust, PO Box 61, Reading MA (online at Arrangements under the direction of Lane Funeral Home, WINCHESTER. For online condolences please visit

William J Kennedy

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