Loretta M. Wallace, 88

Mar 12, 2019 by

Owned and operated Chipman’s in Wakefield, U.S. Navy veteran

Published March 12, 2019

MELROSE — Loretta M. (O’Connor) Wallace, 88, of Melrose died at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital on March 9, 2019.

Loretta grew up in Jamaica Plain with her mother, father, and brother Jim. She attended parochial schools and led a life of strong faith. After graduating high school, Loretta enlisted in the U.S. Navy, where she was stationed in Norfolk, Va. It was there she met and married her husband, Ralph. They settled in Melrose and created a loving home for their seven children. They were married 49 years before Ralph passed away suddenly in 2003.

When their children were young, Loretta volunteered as a Girl Scout and Boy Scout leader and took a job as a crossing guard in Melrose. She was active in the Saint Mary’s prayer group for many years. When her children were older, Loretta went to college and earned her associates degree in Interior Design from Bunker Hill Community College. She enjoyed decorating and making a house feel like a home.

She and Ralph owned and operated Chipman’s, a small family business in Wakefield, where she worked from 1978, until she retired at the age of 80 in 2011. A genuine people-person, Loretta was the primary contact for customers as they came through the door, happily offering advice and guidance in selecting window coverings for their homes.

Loretta valued spending time with her family and always treated others with respect and kindness. She enjoyed being outdoors, taking long walks, dancing, country music, and spending time with family and friends. Everyone who knew her was impressed by her generosity, kindness, forgiving nature and her sense of humor.

Mrs. Wallace was the beloved wife of the late Ralph E. Wallace. Loving mother of Cathleen M. Corsetti and her husband Antony of Yarmouth Port, Steven R. Wallace and Patricia of Wakefield, Jean M. Wallace and Michael Fratto of Wakefield, Jane P. Chambers and Frank Pagliarulo of Somerville, Marguerite L. Wallace of Haverhill, James J. Wallace and Jennifer of North Reading, Anne M. Demenkow and the late Shawn of Wakefield. Sister of the late James O’Connor. Also survived by 12 grandchildren, the late Emily A. Demenkow, two great-grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and friends.

Visitation will be held at the Gately Funeral Home 79 W. Foster St. Melrose on Wednesday, March 13 from 5-8 p.m. Funeral procession from Gately Funeral Home on Thursday morning March 14 at 9 a.m., followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Mary’s Church, 9 Herbert St. Melrose at 10 a.m. Interment at Forest Glade Cemetery in Wakefield. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend. To send a message please visit www.gatelyfh.com

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