Gillooly Funeral Home

126 Walpole Street, Norwood, MA


Lea E. (O’Brien) Riley

2 September, 19319 December, 2019

Lea (O’Brien) Riley, of Norwood, passed away peacefully on December 9, 2019 surrounded by her loving children and grandchildren. She was 88.

Married to the late Dr. Paul V. Riley, she lived in Norwood for many years, followed by retirement in Harwich before a move back to Norwood. She was born in Boston to the late Arthur and Margaret O’Brien on September 2, 1931. After graduating from Rockland High School in 1949 where she was vice president of her class, she attended St. Elizabeth’s Hospital School of Nursing in Brighton, MA, becoming a registered nurse in 1952. Lea worked for several years as an operating room nurse at St. Elizabeth’s Hospital. After her nursing career, she managed the business office of her husband’s Norwood dental practice for decades.

Predeceased by brothers Arthur and Paul O’Brien and sister Rita Ledwell, she is survived by three siblings: John O’Brien of Harwich, Sheila Burke of Abington and Kathleen Doyle of Weymouth.

She leaves five children, Patrick, wife Charlotte (Winograd) of Sharon; Paul, wife Lynne (Olson) of Norwood; John, wife Lois (McAulliffe) of Mansfield; Bennet, wife Nancy (Walsh) of Norwood; and daughter Sheila, and husband Larry Eppolito of Chelmsford.

She is also survived by thirteen adoring grandchildren: Sheila Riley, Peter Riley, Aliesha Bennett, Siobhan Riley, Paul Riley III, Coleen Riley, Alyson Riley, Shauna Riley, Bennet Riley, Matthew Riley, Grace Eppolito, Rose Eppolito and Sophie Eppolito.

Lea will be remembered for her strong and enduring love of family, books, plants, Cape Cod, sports and cooking, and for her welcoming, non-judgmental spirit. She was an oasis of calm acceptance and safety for her family and for generations of grateful friends. A wake will be held at Gillooly Funeral Home, 126 Walpole Street, Norwood on Thursday, December 12 from 4 to 8 p.m. Funeral will be held on Friday, December 13 at 10 a.m. from the Gillooly Funeral Home followed by a Funeral Mass at 11 a.m. at St. Catherine of Siena Church, 549 Washington Street, Norwood. In lieu of flowers, expressions of sympathy may be made in Lea’s name to The Family Pantry of Cape Cod, 133 Queen Anne Road, Harwich, MA or at thefamilypantry.com.


  • Visitation Thursday, 12 December , 2019
  • A Mass of Christian Burial Friday, 13 December , 2019


Lea E. (O’Brien) Riley

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Rose Leclair

11 December 2019

Matt and family So sorry to hear about your grandmother. Thoughts, prayers and hugs are sent to you Matt for strength during this heart breaking time. It sounds like she was a great grandma. God Bless.