Patricia J. Maxwell, 92

Jan 17, 2019 by

Published January 18, 2019

MELROSE — Patricia J. (Joyce) Maxwell, 92, of Melrose, died peacefully on January 7, 2019. Beloved wife of the late Benjamin L. Maxwell. Loving mother of Keith J. Maxwell and his wife Nancy of Roslindale, Bruce L. Maxwell and his wife Kelly of Holden, Brian L. Maxwell of Melrose, and the late Scott R. Maxwell and his wife Annmarie Maxwell Service and her husband Marty of Methuen. Cherished grandmother of Jason, Andrew and Amy, Benjamin, Scott and Charlotte. Proud great-grandmother of Hillary, Natalie, Mallory, Rosalie, Ashley, Liliana, and Benjamin. Sister of the late Elizabeth J. Murphy and the late Ilene R. Squires. Also survived by many nieces and nephews.  

Visitation was held at the Gately Funeral Home, 79 W. Foster St. Melrose on Saturday, January 12, followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Mary’s Church, 9 Herbert St. Melrose. Interment at Puritan Lawn Cemetery in Peabody. Relatives and friends were respectfully invited to attend. Memorial contributions may be made to Hallmark Health VNA & Hospice, Inc., 178 Savin St., Malden, MA 02148, or to fedupwithcancer.org.  

Born in Jamaica Plain on March 18, 1926, Patricia was the oldest of three daughters of John Joseph Joyce of Leenane, Ireland, and Mary Agnes Kerrigan of South Boston. She grew up in Dorchester in St Margaret’s Parish (now Blessed Mother Teresa of Calcutta Parish).  

Patricia graduated high school in 1943 at seventeen and went to work in Boston as a courier for the engineering firm Stone and Webster, delivering among other things blueprints for buildings at Los Alamos as part of the Manhattan Project. After the war, she worked at the Retail Credit Bureau, where she met her future husband, Benjamin L. Maxwell. They married on October 12, 1949 and settled in Medford. Sons Keith, Scott, Bruce and Brian arrived between 1950 and 1959 – the impending arrival of their youngest son led to a move from a four-room apartment to a new home in Melrose in January 1959. She lived in that home from 1959 until 2013.  

After raising her sons, Patricia returned to the workforce, and was employed full-time for 20 years as a secretary at Lincoln School and with Parent-Pupil Services in the Melrose School Department. She retired in 1991 to spend time with her family and friends, pursue hobbies, enjoy music, and travel.  

She was an active member of St. Mary’s Parish in Melrose for 50 years, including membership in the Women’s Sodality and serving as a Eucharistic Minister, and as a baptism and marriage counselor during her retirement. She also volunteered at the Melrose-Wakefield Hospital and at the Melrose Public Library.  

Patricia traveled to Ireland five times, starting with a trip with her parents in 1932 when she was six years old. She revisited Ireland and attended a family wedding in England for the last time, 73 years later. She also enjoyed trips to Mexico, California, Canada, a river cruise on the Mississippi, and a trip to Israel.  

Eclectic and catholic in her tastes, Patricia enjoyed Chopin and ballet, Willie Nelson and line dancing, yoga and chocolate. She played the piano from childhood until her late eighties; during her long life she enjoyed swimming, tennis, ice skating, and golf. Self-sufficient, stoic and strong, she cared for her parents, husband and son Scott during their long illnesses and remained cheerful throughout her own decline. She will be deeply missed but remembered with great love and affection. To send a message of condolence please visit www.gateylfh.com

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