Paul Peter McLaughlin
April 18, 1942 – May 4, 2020
“You may be gone from our sight, but you are never gone from our heart”
It is with great sadness that the family of Paul Peter McLaughlin, 78, affectionately known as “Opa,” announces his peaceful passing on May 4, 2020. For 52 years he was the beloved husband of his loving wife, Dagmar.
Paul was a spiritual man, lived a full life and was known by everyone as a true gentleman. His common sense, intelligence, integrity and devotion to his family was exceptional. Paul truly left the world a better place.
Paul’s optimistic approach to life allowed him to build companies, forge lasting relationships and embrace family and friends wholeheartedly. He loved family dinners, having coffee on Thursday mornings with his Harley HOG group, cross country motorcycle rides with his “Brother Bob”, son Pauli, and son-in-law, John, playing golf, fixing anything around the house that needed fixing and spending time with his grandchildren.
Born in Newton, MA. Paul was the son of George and Patricia McLaughlin. He attended Babson College in Wellesley, MA and remained an active alumnus throughout his life and continued close relationships with friends from Babson until his passing. After college, he worked for the Malden Trust Company as a bank manager and later started and owned his own packaging company.
The majority of his career was spent at the Butcher Polish Company where he was Vice President of International Operations and was ultimately named President and CEO. As President he was integral to the sale of Butcher’s to SC Johnson Wax in 2000. One of his fondest memories was helping Charlie Butcher share $18 million of the proceeds from the sale of the company with Butcher’s long-time employees.
After retiring from Butcher’s, Paul enrolled in Harley Davidson’s mechanic school and went on to become a motorcycle mechanic at American Harley Davidson in Leominster. Riding was always a passion and Paul began a tradition of riding across the U.S. on his Harley for two weeks each summer and did it a total of 15 times, shipping his bike out to Los Angeles or to his son Pauli’s house in Portland, and riding back to Boston.
Never one to stay idle or out of the business world, Paul served on several company Boards and also volunteered as a part-time financial advisor for Acton Pharmaceuticals, a start-up Sequoia Capital venture backed company co-founded by his son-in-law. Paul was an integral part of building the initial infrastructure and helped get the company off to a successful start. The company later sold for over $120 million.
Paul also enjoyed volunteering his time to his community. He served on the Finance Committee in Stow, MA. He volunteered at St. Isadore’s Parish, doing everything from hanging shelves to replacing the kneelers in the church, and he also volunteered for Habitat for Humanity.
He is survived by his devoted wife Dagmar of Stow, MA; their children and spouses: Sonja and John Simon of Sudbury, MA and Paul and Wendee McLaughlin of Lake Oswego, OR; grandchildren Alexis Jones, Christopher Jones, Emma Simon, Lauren Simon, Josie McLaughlin and Ian McLaughlin; a sister Virginia Trumble of Wilmington, NC, a brother and sister-in-law Robert and Francine McLaughlin of Guam, as well as a larger extended family including nephews and nieces and their families across the country.
A celebration of Paul’s life will be held on a future date when his friends and family can safely gather together in person to honor a life of integrity and grace.
No public services are scheduled at this time. Receive a notification when services are updated.
Paul Peter McLaughlin
May 14, 2020
I knew Paul from the Harley group. He was a great guy. I wish I knew him longer. He had a great personality. May he rest in peace.
May 12, 2020
Rest well and in Peace, my dear friend Paul of 46 years, Diane and I remember so many good times with you and Dagmar, Sal and Mary Perra, and all our children together, and especially our ride in Sal's VW Bus to the Warren Tavern in Charlestown in a driving snowstorm in a cold night in a long passed January.
Our continuing love and memories to you and Dagmar and your wonderful Family .
Tom and Diane Maher
May 9, 2020
I know Paul, from the Leominster Hog Group and The Thursday ride group. Always a smile I grew up in Sudbury and he would tell what a wonderful it was. Always had nice things to say about anything we were taking about. And when he was on the Fire Station Board for the Town of Stow to redo the the school from there new headquarters , with Chief Joe LANDERY, Thank you Paul for all you have done you well be missed . R I P my friend Until we ride again ….
May 8, 2020
I met Paul back in 2003 when I joined Leominster Hog. You could not help but like him right from the get go. I wish there was more I could say about Paul but it has all ready been said . Gentlemen,Sincere,Respectable. Just a great guy who will be missed by many. My heart goes out to Paul's Wife and family on your loss. Rest in peace my friend until we all meet up again, rev our engines and make some noise.
May 8, 2020
Paul was indeed a true gentlemen, always focused on the good and never the bad side of his affairs. Paul was one of the most respectable people I ever know. He always had a kind word about everyone or you didn't hear from him. I know Paul for about 14 years when I enjoyed riding with him with the HOG chapter and on Thursday Rides. He will surely be missed. I hope that Fatboy gets some wings and you RIDE ON! I will carry your memory with other fallen friend as lone as I can ride. RIP my Friend!
May 8, 2020
Paul and I have been friends for 25 years. We met through the Leominster Harley Owners Group chapter. Paul would share stories of his cross country trips with his brother. He was very willing to share the rules. Like no chain restaurants, "If the waitress wasn't calling you Honey or Dear, you were in the wrong place." And no U-turns is always a good rule. The places you find are always unexpected treasures.
Paul was part of my Thursday ride group. His input on our destinations helped us to make great choices for our weekly rides.
Paul is already deeply missed. I am so glad that we met and were friends.