James F. Fitzgerald

October 21st, 2021

James F. Fitzgerald, “Jim”, age 91, a long-time resident of Wilmington, passed away peacefully on October 20, 2021.

Jim was born on February 22, 1930, in Boston, MA; he was the dear son of the late Lawrence and Bridget Fitzgerald. Jim, along with his siblings, were raised and educated in the Mission Hill section of West Roxbury a large Irish community. Jim was very bright, he graduated Mission Hill High School at the age of 16. He worked for a few years before he was inducted into the United States Army during the Korean War.

Jim began active duty on May 19, 1952, with the 1577 Headquarters Battery, 28th Artillery Unit and served overseas. Following his return to the United States Jim was honorably discharged at Camp Kilmer, New Jersey, on April 24, 1954 and headed home to his family. Jim was proud of his service to our Country and upon his return home he joined the American Legion Post in Mission Hill where he supported his fellow Veterans that were also returning home from war.

Jim then went on to continue his educated at Northeastern University in Boston where he studied Chemical Engineering and coached their Softball Team.

Jim worked hard throughout his life, early on he went to work for NASA in Cambridge, MA before accepting a position as a Chemical Engineer with the MIT Lincoln Labs in Lexington; this was the start of a long and rewarding career that spanned more than 30 years and where he met his future bride. Jim was a very bright and dedicated employee; he was instrumental in many projects at Lincoln Labs over the years and was always willing to help his fellow co-workers.

Jim married his “sweetheart” Deborah Manson January 10,1959; the couple settled on Marion Street in Wilmington where they raised their family and made many life-long friends with their neighbors. Jim was a very devoted and loving Dad to his children and a wonderful “Papa” to his grandchildren. Jim was very involved with his children and with his community of Wilmington. Jim coached Wilmington Little League and Wilmington Rec. Basketball teams for many years; he was not only there to support his own children but was a mentor to many of the other kids. In later years when the grandchildren arrived, Jim and Deborah were always there to attend their school and sporting events or any other activity that their grandchildren were involved in; then it was out for ice cream with Papa and Nanny; these were such fun times for the kids.

Jim and Deborah along with their family and friends had many wonderful times together throughout the years; whether it was family vacations, holidays, or just hanging out together; everyone always had fun. Some of the more memorable trips for Jim and Deborah included Vegas, Foxwoods or the many trips with the Wilmington Recreation Department with their friends. Jim also loved to go candlepin bowling and was part of the MIT bowling league for many years.

Jim will be fondly remembered as an all around “great guy”; he had a wonderful personality and was always willing to help others. Jim loved his family and friends with all his heart and he will forever be missed.

Jim was the beloved husband of the late Deborah (Manson) Fitzgerald, devoted father of Karen Roberts & her husband Kenneth of Wilmington, Donna Fuchs of Haverhill and Michael Fitzgerald of Tewksbury. Loving “Papa” of Heather & Michael MacMillan, Justin & Hannah Roberts, Brianna Fuchs, Cheyenne Fuchs and Great-Grandson Michael MacMillan. Dear son of the late Lawrence and Bridget (Dwyer) Fitzgerald, brother of the late Daniel, John, William, Lawrence and Helen Fitzgerald. Jim is also survived by his nieces, nephews and friends.

Family and friends will gather for Visitation at the Nichols Funeral Home, 187 Middlesex Ave. (Rte. 62), Wilmington, on Friday, October 22nd from 12:30-1:30 p.m. with a Service at 1:30 p.m. Interment with Military Honors will follow in Wildwood Cemetery, Wilmington.

In lieu of flowers, donations in James’ memory may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 309 Waverley Oaks Road, Waltham, MA 02454.


6 Entries in Guest Book for “James F. Fitzgerald”

  1. Ed McDougall says:

    Mike, I have great regrets for your loss but, I also regret that I did not have the honor and good fortune of knowing your dad. He sounds like he really knew how to not only enjoy his life but, he gave joy and happiness to others as well. Without a doubt I am sure that he was a great influence on the lives and growth of all of the “kids” that he mentored. Mike – be sad but – relish in all of the great memories you have of him.

  2. Cherie L. Post says:

    Karen and family – I got to know your dad Jim while working as a Companion at Windsor Place. Though he was quiet he was always polite and I often joked he was like my husband (when he was done eating he was quick to go to his room), chew and screw. Please except my condolence at this difficult time.

    Cherie Post
    Billerica, MA

  3. Joel Collier says:

    I was so fortunate to know Jim his wife, Deb while working at Windsor Place as the driver. Jim was a very pleasant person who especially enjoyed the Windsor outings. He and his wife were a very special and loving couple. I am certain that Deb was there to greet her love at the pearly gates where they are now together for eternity.

  4. linda strob & Jack Strob says:


    So sorry to hear about your dad

  5. linda strob & Jack Strob says:


    passing. Prayers to you and your family.

    Jack and Linda

  6. Nuna Mingo says:

    I would like to extend my sincerest condolences to the Fitzgerald family. Uncle Jimmy was Dan’s ( my stepfather’s) youngest brother. He, and aunt Debbie were two of the nicest people I had an honor to know. I have many happy memories of them and their children. It was fun listening to Dan and his brothers reminiscing about their life on Mission Hill. Uncle Jimmy and I had a good laugh when we realized that we both had sister Philippa as a teacher. He was a bright, nice and a kind man who will be missed, but his legacy is carried in through his children and grandchildren.
    Sending my condolences and healing thoughts to the family.

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