Lt. Col. John C. Twomey Jr., 63

Jan 10, 2019 by

Published January 11, 2019

MELROSE — Lt. Col. John C. “Jack” Twomey, Jr., 63, a resident of Melrose, passed away at home peacefully and unexpectedly on Monday, December 31, 2018.

Jack was born in Boston on April 1, 1955, one of two children of John C. Twomey, Sr. and Katherine (Mahoney) Twomey. He was raised in Reading and graduated from Austin Preparatory School, Class of 1973. In the spring of 1975, he attended the North Reading High School Senior Prom with Karen Brophy. They fell in love, were married on September 10, 1977, and settled in Melrose in 1985 to raise a daughter and son.

After starting a family, and working in the medical field, Jack joined the Army. As the son of a WWII Navy veteran, Jack always had service in his mind. He received a Nursing Degree from Regis College, and worked in the Emergency Department at Boston Medical Center for over 20 years.

A humble leader and innate mentor, Jack combined his background in medicine with his desire to help and instruct others through his service as Medical/Surgical Nurse in the Army. During his 20 years of dedicated military service, Jack was deployed throughout the world from Kosovo to Iraq. While stationed in Iraq, Jack served as the Officer in Command for the EMT Section in Tikrit where he was responsible for overseeing the emergency medical needs of wounded soldiers. For his honorable service, Jack was the recipient of the Bronze Star. Jack was always calm while facing difficult situations, and knew how to connect with people to put them at ease and accomplish a goal.

When at home in Melrose, Jack helped establish the MA-1 Disaster Medical Team which led to the creation of the International Medical/Surgical Response Team. As Commander, Jack was instrumental in coordinating medical teams to respond in disaster relief situations around the world. He was also involved in annual Air Sea Rescue events in Marblehead.

In his free time, Jack enjoyed traveling throughout the U.S. with his wife, Karen. He had a love for their summer cottage in Dennis Port on Cape Cod where he enjoyed relaxing at the beach, biking, or reading a book. Always active, Jack enjoyed hiking the Middlesex Fells, working in the yard outside his home, and “working out” with his grandsons. Fiercely proud of his Irish heritage, Jack deeply respected his roots and remained forever loyal to his family and friends.

An understated renaissance man, Jack was widely respected for always supporting and mentoring others. He will be remembered for his ability to lead, inspire and teach those around him through his selfless actions and subtle example. He will be deeply missed, and always lovingly remembered by his family, friends, and the many lives he saved and touched throughout his life.

Jack was the beloved husband of Karen J. (Brophy) Twomey with whom he shared 41 years of marriage. Devoted father of Erin Galvin and her husband Steve of Lynn, and Sean Twomey and his wife Aleksandra of Portsmouth, R.I. Cherished grandfather of Stephen and Liam Galvin, and Roman and Alexander Twomey. Dear brother of Jean Twomey and her husband Jeff Ryan of South Portland, Maine, and brother-in-law of Robert Brophy and his wife Deborah of North Reading, and John Brophy and his wife Korey of Harwich. Also survived by several nieces and nephews.

Relatives and friends were invited to gather in honor of Jack’s life during visiting hours at the Robinson Funeral Home, 809 Main St., Melrose on Friday, Jan. 4 and again on Saturday before leaving in procession to the St. Mary’s Church, Herbert St., Melrose for his funeral Mass. Gifts in Jack’s memory may be made to the MGH Immunobiology Laboratory, Attn: Dr. Denise Faustman, MGH-East Building 149, 13th Street, CNY-3601, Charlestown, MA 02129 or online at For more info please visit

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