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Cuffe-McGinn Funeral Home

157 Maple Street, Lynn, MA

OBITUARY

Gary L. Kalapinski

April 27, 1948September 8, 2019
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Gary Lee Kalapinski, of Lynn, MA passed away on Sunday September 8th at the age of 71 years old. After a hard-fought battle with cancer, he died peacefully with all of his girls (his wife Elaine, and his daughters, Leah, Sarah, and Becky) by his side.

Gary was born on April 27th, 1948 in Lynn, MA to Sarah Francis (MacDonald) Kalapinski and Henry Kalapinski, both of Lynn. He was a loving younger brother to Paul Kalapinski of Marshfield, MA, and James Kalapinski of Lynn. He attended Classical High School (’65) and spent 2 years at Northeastern University.

Gary was a Navy veteran and proudly served as a radarman on the USS Forrestal in 1967. He showed us a glimpse of his strength, bravery, and genuine care for the well-being of others while serving on that ship during a tragic accident.

Gary met his wife, Elaine, while dressed as a woman at the Porthole Pub on Halloween in 1970. His charm and quick wit captured her attention and they later married in 1972. Together they raised 3 daughters through a life of love, laughter, stubbornness, and a special kind of humor.

Gary had many, many, many friends and acquaintances. As the president of the Honeybee Bowling League at Metro Bowl in Peabody, MA for 25 years, a member of the team at M.C. Heald Liquor store for 30 years (from where he hooked his girls on Juicy Fruit gum), jobs at General Electric, US Filter, and work as a mason alongside his buddy Skippy DeLuca – he touched so many lives. He also captured the hearts of the many, many nurses he encountered at Salem Hospital, Encompass Health and Rehabilitation in Beverly, MA, and finally, the Kaplan House in Danvers, MA. Even through a long and harsh illness he kept his sense of humor and concern for others ahead of any hardship he was dealing with personally. All will miss him dearly.

More recently, he spent his time enjoying his 8 grandchildren, writing some of his famous poetry, playing Words With Friends with anyone who would accept his invitation, and watching all Boston sports teams dominate. Appropriately, he passed away during a Sox/Yankees series and on Patriots opening day.

Gary leaves behind his wife Elaine (Bryant), his daughters Leah Warren of Lynn, Sarah McIsaac of Salisbury, MA, and Becky Benowicz of Medford MA; his sons in law, Chris Warren, Rick McIsaac, and Scott Benowicz. His 8 grandchildren (Brooke, Brady, and Brenna Warren; Matthew, Christopher, and Riley McIsaac; and Kaye and William Benowicz) will all miss their Papa G as will his older brother Paul Kalapinski of Marshfield, MA. Gary was a proud Uncle to many nieces and nephews.

Gary would have said, “It’s a beautiful thing….”

Visiting hours will be held on Thursday, September 12th from 3:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. at Cuffe-McGinn Funeral Home, 157 Maple St., Lynn, followed by a Funeral Mass on Friday at 9:00 a.m. at St. Pius V, Lynn. Burial will follow St. Josephs Cemetery, Lynn. The family requests donations in his memory to the American Cancer Society, P.O. Box 22478, Oklahoma City, OK 73123, or to The Disabled American Veterans, P.O. Box 14301, Cincinnati, OH 45250-0301.

Services

  • Memorial Visitation Thursday, September 12, 2019
  • Funeral from Cuffe-McGinn Funeral Home Friday, September 13, 2019
  • Funeral Mass Friday, September 13, 2019
  • Interment Friday, September 13, 2019

Memories

Gary L. Kalapinski

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Paul Doucett

September 12, 2019

What a thrill and honor it was to have worked with Gary at the treatment facility. He was such a genuine and unique person. I thoroughly enjoyed talking sports and family with 'Kaps'. He was on my shift at US Filter and we had more laughs than not. I always enjoyed stories of his family, Sebastian the 'attitude dog' as Gary referred to him, the adventures and 'breakage of MC Healds, and his wartime memories. What a great American!
Being from Polish decent, we often exchanged pleasantries in Polish as he was well versed. He taught me cribbage and another professional pastime of his that i will not include here. I was so fortunate to have Gary in my life and as a friend. The world is truly a lesser place without him.
Sorry that I will not be able to make the services. Condolences to the entire Kalapinski family.

Paul Doucett
Barrington, NH

Donald Kalapinski

September 11, 2019

Elaine and Family
I am very sorry to hear of Gary's passing , I will always remember him for calling me "Professor" when ever we would see one another.( something his father nick named when I started wearing glasses at a very early age) Please accept our condolences on his passing.

Don and Martha Kalapinski


Anne Marie Brewin-Liston

September 11, 2019

Dear Elaine,
I am so sorry to hear of Gary's passing, my sincere condolences to you and your family. I still have the wonderful poem Gary wrote for my cousin, France Ryan. She enjoyed having your family as neighbors, watching your girls grow up.

AnneMarie Brewin

Shane & Lynne Downey

September 10, 2019

Sending lots of love and warm wishes from Toronto to Becky and the entire family. A family filled with laughter to say the very least! Think long of you all.

Phil Clifford

September 10, 2019

Fair Winds and Following Seas Shipmate

DON BRYANT

September 10, 2019

Fair Winds and Following Seas Uncle Gary, you fought the hard fight and succeeded in raising three beautiful daughters, no small feat. You were my fathers friend, I know he loved you and how much that you meant to him. I will never forget the beautiful poem that you wrote for my Grandmother's funeral. It touched my heart and I will always carry a piece of you with me for that. Fair thee well Uncle Gary, Fair Winds and Following Seas.

Jennifer Stevens-White

September 9, 2019

I am so sad about the loss of such a great man. My heart goes out to the entire family of Gary. I have many fond memories of Papa "G". Lynnfield street was always one of my go to places during high school. I will never forget after the passing of my dad telling him how much he reminded me of him. He was always joking or teasing one of the girls or Elaine. Making the visitors laugh hysterically. His Old Milwaukees tasted terrible. Not that we ever took them. My fondest memory though was when he told me that I was going to be ok and that if I ever needed anything , he was sure Leah would rent him out for a small fee. I know that he isn't suffering anymore and I know that heaven only takes angels. They sure got a good one with Gary. Love you Leah, Sarah, Becky and Elaine. May memories help you during this time and going forward.

Ellen Patterson

September 9, 2019

Uncle Gary, You are the best! I am sure there is a whole party of relatives and friends greeting you in heaven with open arms!! Please give them our love!
Auntie Lainey, Leah, Sarah and Becky and families, We love you so much and hope Uncle Gary's love, poetry and memories help you through this most difficult time. Love you always, Ellen and our families.

Jill O’Reilly

September 9, 2019

My “cool” Uncle Gary was always there when I needed him. When I was attending Marian Court Jr. College, he would help me with my math studies even after working brick laying in the daytime and in between his G.E. shift. He worked tirelessly for not just his immediate family but for nieces, sisters-in-law, and any extended family. He was a kind, sentimental, loving uncle and very 😎 cool! We will miss you Uncle Gary 😘

Robin Perry-Russo

September 9, 2019

Leah , Chris —. Just know that I am sorry for your loss, my heart ♥️ is with you at this time! Love you both so much

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