James J. Quinn, Jr., 81, peacefully passed away on Wednesday, May 3, 2017 at Mass General Hospital in Boston, surrounded by his loving family. He was predeceased by his wife, Jean (Hansbury), in 2007.
Jim was born April 8, 1936 in Providence, RI to the late James J. Quinn, Sr., and Margaret (Victor). His stepmother, Iona (Mitchell) helped raise him from a young age and he passed from this life blanketed by a colorful quilt that she handmade many years ago.
Jim was raised just steps from Lake Tiogue in Coventry, RI, and was a graduate of Coventry High School, Class of 1954. He served honorably in the U.S. Air Force for eight years during the Korean War, including four years in the reserves.
He played baseball in his high school years and some in the Air Force too. After finishing his military service, he tried out for the St. Louis Cardinals, and reportedly had an arm like a "canon." Unfortunately Jim didn’t make the cut.
Jim worked for Pan American World Airways until his retirement in 1991. As a benefit, he and his wife Jean were able to globetrot and enjoy good times all around this little place called Earth.
Back in the day, he enjoyed bowling and was involved in a couple of leagues. Jim and Jean also enjoyed cross-country skiing.
Fun times were had while camping at the family’s Fox Run campsite in Epping, NH. More good times were had at Canobie Lake Park, with magical soakings on the log flume, messy consumption of cheeseburgers and ice cream, travelling down memory lane with Canobie’s barbershop quartet, and energized by the Michael Jackson tribute show.
Other recollections include the infamous Jasper Street water balloon incident, many yummy holiday dinners in Newton, apple picking at Russell Orchards in Ipswich, many cookout gatherings in Saugus, pool parties in Middleton and Coventry, holiday dinners in Coventry, and eating homemade sandwiches with windblown sand while at Crane Beach.
Jim enjoyed music quite a bit, and we wonder about his dancing skills in his younger days. We’ll reminisce his enjoyment of Barbara Streisand, Neil Diamond and Bruce Springsteen—but take solace in knowing he’ll enjoy Heaven’s unlimited juke box.
And his beloved Red Sox, he will surely miss them, but can now catch up with players of his era in the “Field of Dreams.” He and his family attended many Sox games over the years. He once rode in the same wheelchair that Johnny Pesky had just used, which was interesting since we usually sat just steps away from the Pesky Pole. Jim took special joy at the Sox having won three World Series championships. Of note, he visited the National Baseball Hall of Fame in 2009, the year of Jim Rice's induction into the hall.
Jim had a friendly, soft-spoken demeanor and never spoke ill of anyone. As his health declined in recent years, it was sad to lose little pieces of him that everybody was used to. Something that stayed with him though was his healthy appetite for food, especially cookies, chocolate and ice cream.
His family takes comfort in knowing that Jim is now with family and friends who passed before him. May he rest in the peace that he so graciously deserves.
Jim is survived by his sons, Brian Quinn of Middleton, Stephen Quinn and his wife Martha of Boston, sister Janet (Quinn) St. Jean and her husband Joseph of Coventry, RI, brother Robert Quinn of Cocoa, FL, brother-in-law William Hansbury of St. Petersburg, FL, niece Donna (St. Jean) Hagenburg and children of Coventry, RI, nephew Joseph St. Jean and family of Coventry, RI, James St. Jean and family of North Carolina, niece Maureen (Hansbury) Vahey and husband Ted of Newton, MA and their son Aidan, nephew Michael Hansbury of Hyde Park, MA, nephew Griffin Hansbury of New York City, NY, longtime family friend, Rose Chioccola of Stoneham, MA, and longtime coworker and friend, John Johnstone of Walpole, MA.
He is predeceased by his wife Jean (Hansbury), parents James Quinn, Sr., Margaret (Victor), Iona (Mitchell), brother-in-law John “Jack” Hansbury, sister-in-law Nancy Hansbury, and childhood friend Harold Fell.
Jim’s family would like to thank the staff at Mass General Hospital in Boston for all of their effort and compassion in recent days.
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