William M. Cavanaugh

July 12, 1933February 5, 2019

William M. Cavanaugh, 85, of Auburn, died peacefully February 5, 2019 at his home surrounded by family. He was born in Somerville, MA on July 12, 1933, one of eight children of John and Doris (Clough) Cavanaugh. His family returned to Manchester when he was in junior high school, and he was a graduate of West High School in 1951. He later attended St. Anselm College in Goffstown. He was a veteran of the US Air Force serving during the Korean Conflict.

A man of countless talents, Bill was self- employed for many years. He founded Cavanaugh Construction Company in 1973 building McDonalds restaurants all over the northeast. Several years later, he founded Mark Marine which he considered his most rewarding business venture. He conceived, manufactured and sold the Mark 23 sloop and the Downeast Schooner, boats which are still being sailed and enjoyed forty years later. In 1983, he co-founded, with his wife Marilyn, Country Woods Furniture, a family business which continues to operate to this day, now owned by his eldest son Stephen. Anyone who knew Bill was immediately taken in by his strong love of family, his warmth and his clever wit. Bill loved sailing the coast of Maine and exploring its many islands. He enjoyed walking through woods be it in Maine, the hills in Sicily or the trails along Lake Massabesic. He was a voracious reader, a committed New England sports fan and an enthusiastic traveler. Bill loved spending time with his family and friends and will always be remembered as a loving and devoted husband, father, grandfather, son, brother and friend.

Members of his family include his wife of 46 years Marilyn (Henrich) Cavanaugh of Auburn, his children Stephen Cavanaugh and his wife Jodie of Amherst, Glenn Cavanaugh and his wife Jayne of New Egypt, NJ, Cindy Dawson and her husband Bob of Manchester, Chris Cavanaugh and his wife Michelle also of Manchester and Scott Cavanaugh and his wife Ashley Grant of Easthampton, MA, his grandchildren Christopher, Kaylee, Emily, Tom, Kylie, Josiah, Claudia, Brodie, Lyla and Ezra, his sister Mae Lindamood of Salem, VA, his brother Ed Cavanaugh and his wife Dolores of San Jose, CA , and his brother- and sister-in-law Bill and Linda Henrich of Syosset, NY, as well as many nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his first wife Marie (Proulx) Cavanaugh, by his sisters Doris, Ruth and Pat and his brothers Jack and Paul.

The family would like to extend special thanks to Manchester VNA Hospice for their attentiveness, compassion and care. There were no calling hours. A Memorial Mass was celebrated on Saturday, February 16 at 10 am at St. Peter Church, 567 Manchester Road in Auburn followed by a gathering for friends and family to share memories. A private burial will be held at Auburn Village Cemetery at a later date. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Bill’s name may be made the American Cancer Society 2 Commerce Dr. Suite 110 Bedford, NH 03110 or to the Society for the Protection of New Hampshire Forests 54 Portsmouth St. Concord, NH 03110.


  • Memorial Service Saturday, February 16, 2019

William M. Cavanaugh

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Joan Durocher

February 16, 2019

With thousands of people coming through my berry fields are you really surprised that Bill Cavanaugh stands out??? He had a presence about him and I remember him easily. I am sad for your loss but Heaven is an even nicer place with Bill's arrival.
Sincerely, Joan Durocher

Nancy Philbrick

February 14, 2019

Marilyn and Family,
For many years, I had the distinct pleasure of cutting Bill's hair at Nelson's Haircutters and he was always such an interesting person, and so fun to chat with every time he came in.
A true renaissance man, with multiple talents and interests, he certainly made the most of his life.
Sending along prayers for swift wings to sail Bill to Heaven-

Ed Cummings

February 14, 2019

So sad to hear of Bill's passing. Always enjoyed the Friday lunches when Bill was there. Will also remember the bus ride to Gloucester for the sail aboard the Lannon. God's blessing to you and your family. The world has lost another earth angel.

David Berlinguette

February 13, 2019

Leilani and I are so sorry to hear of Bill's passing. You have both been treasured friends to my parents, and to our family as a whole. Please know that we are thinking of you during this difficult time.

Terry LaRock

February 13, 2019

Marilyn, I am sorry for your loss. I first meet Bill at one of those "famous" PJ lunches. It saddens me that I had not come to visit him when he was still with us. Terry

Dianne Insley-Alden

February 13, 2019

Marilyn, sorry to hear of Bill’s passing . Brian loved working at marks marine. Thought and prayers to you and your family.

Susan Poliquin

February 11, 2019

I am so sorry to hear of Uncle Bill's passing. So many family memories were made at Uncle Bill and Aunt Marilyn's home. Family reunions, birthdays etc. They always opened their hearts and home for all of the Cavanaugh clan. My heart hurts and my sincerest condolences go out to Marilyn, Steve, Glenn, Chris, Cindy and Scott and their families. You are all in my thoughts and prayers.