American Patriotic 10

Philip A. Fenton, Sr.

April 26, 1949 ~ March 17, 2024 (age 74) 74 Years Old

Philip Fenton, Sr. Obituary

Philip A. Fenton, Sr., "Phil", age 74, a life-long resident of Wilmington, MA, passed away peacefully on March 17, 2024, at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, MA.

Phil was born in Winchester, MA, on April 26, 1949; he was the dear son of the late Alan and Marilyn (Lyons) Fenton.  Phil was raised and educated in Wilmington; he went on to attend Cornwell School and was a graduate of Austin Preparatory High School in Reading with the Class of 1967.

Phil enlisted in the United States Air Force on June 13, 1968; proudly serving the country during the Vietnam War.  He earned his rank of Sergeant in 1970.  He married the “love of his life” Patricia Knott on October 11, 1970; the couple lived in England where Phil was stationed for a year and a half and where their oldest child, Philip Alan Jr., was born.  Phil was honorably discharged in April of 1972. He returned to Massachusetts with his wife and first born.

Phil then went on to further his education; he enrolled at Merrimack College where he studied Political Science and History.  Phil graduated in 1979 with a bachelor’s degree in both subjects.

Phil worked for the United States Postal Service upon returning from the Air Force in 1972. He was a mail carrier for the town of Wilmington during his time at USPS.  Phil enjoyed the friendships he made on “his route” and looked forward to seeing them each day. In addition, Phil earned his real estate broker license and worked as a realtor for his parents’ real estate company, A&M Fenton Real Estate in Wilmington. He took pride in the town and enjoyed helping other families establish roots here.

In 2005, he retired from the Postal Service, but continued to work to keep himself busy. He worked at Sears for a short time and worked as a substitute teacher at Shawsheen Valley Tech. Phil truly enjoyed being a bus driver for the Town of Wilmington. He always greeted the kids with a smile when they boarded the bus each day. When his bus driving days were over, he worked as a crossing guard in town. Phil spent most of time as a crossing guard at Wilmington High School and would bring his dog, Cricket. Cricket sat in the car but LOVED to greet the kids on their way to and from school, especially when they would bring her treats!

Phil was committed to helping the Town of Wilmington in any way he could. He truly enjoyed his time on the School Committee from 1978-1987. During this time, Phil took this position seriously and dedicated many hours to helping shape the school system to better support student and teacher needs. He could often be seen at any of the schools or administrator offices when he was not at work to make sure he had a “hands on” approach. In addition, Phil volunteered as a baseball and soccer coach, CCD teacher, was a member of the Post 136 American Legion, and was a board member for Cub Scouts (spanning 3 decades, including long after his son was a Cub Scout). He especially enjoyed his time coaching his son’s baseball team and his two daughters’ soccer teams. Once he retired, he still wanted to be involved in the community and became a member of the Board of Appeals. Phil was known as an active member of the town and community.

When he was not working or volunteering his time, Phil enjoyed spending time with his family. He was happiest when he was at a gathering with his family. Phil had a smile on his face and loved spending time with all of them. Without a doubt, he loved all of them deeply and each member of his family had a special place in his heart (including “Cricket” and his fur baby grandson “Brady”!) Additionally, he loved gardening, boating, fishing, and sitting by the fire pit. Phil had a garden each year and spent many hours planning and tending to the vegetables throughout the summer into the fall. He looked forward to taking his boat out in the water and was constantly seeking new places to take his boat out. Most recently, he really enjoyed his time talking and sitting by the fire pit. Phil looked forward to being outside, especially in the nice weather.

Phil was a friendly, outgoing guy who was very loyal to his family. He had a great smile, and his sense of humor was endless. Phil always tried to make light of a situation with some type of joke. His children will forever miss his advice and guidance, distinguished laugh, and “annoying jokes”!

He was very proud of his grandchildren and was excited to hear about their accomplishments. Phil absolutely loved hearing about their success in school. He enjoyed watching his grandsons play baseball and his granddaughter dance. Phil always smiled at the thought of them being happy and doing what they loved. They will miss his sense of humor and ability to make them laugh but will truly miss his encouragement and words of wisdom. He will forever hold a place in their heart.

Phil was the beloved husband and best friend of Patricia A. "Pattie" (Knott) Fenton, devoted father of Philip A. Fenton, Jr. and his wife Kerry of Wilmington, Lorilynn Gattineri and her husband Joseph of Wilmington, and Michelle Carriere and her husband James of Hudson, NH.  He was the loving "Grampie" of Tyler, Andrew, Nicholas, Madison and Christopher, brother of the late Dennis Fenton, dear brother-in-law of Gail Knott and Rodney Knott, and special cousin of Marcia Dorion.

Services for Phil will be held at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Phil's memory may be made to Local Heroes, Inc., P. O. Box 536, Wilmington, MA  01887 or to the MSPCA at Nevins Farm, 400 Broadway, Methuen, MA  01844.

Arrangements are under the direction of the Nichols Funeral Home, Wilmington, MA. 

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