Gladys Dorothy (Keenan) Callaghan

August 20, 2023


Gladys Dorothy (Keenan) Callaghan of Canton, age 91, passed away on August 20, 2023, surrounded by her loving family. Born in Brighton, the oldest of six children of William F. Keenan and Jeannette (Dionne) Keenan, she graduated from St Columbkille’s High School in 1949. She was married to her loving husband, Thomas, for sixty-six years until his death in 2021. Theirs was a very happy marriage, enriched by the births of six children. Gladys worked at the New England Telephone Co. for five years prior to her marriage. She was a stay -at- home mom to her children and also raised her youngest sister.

After living in Brighton until 1968, Gladys and Tom moved to Canton and quickly made it their home. Gladys joined the choir at St. Oscar Romero Church and embarked on a fulfilling singing career as a church cantor and funeral and wedding soloist. Gladys always received compliments on her beautiful and emotional singing voice and was always in high demand. When Gladys was in her fifties, she and some church friends formed a singing group called, “The Galaxy Gals.” The “Gals” performed for many years, entertaining at nursing homes and women’s clubs.

Acts of charity defined Gladys’ entire life.  She was always available to drive an elderly parishioner to church or visit a sick friend. She was passionate about the pro-life cause, organizing baby showers at church to assist pregnant women and their babies. A prolific and talented writer, she wrote “Letters to the Editor” regarding pro-life issues and also submitted poems about faith and family. For several years, Gladys organized the “America Needs Fatima” rosary vigil at St. Oscar Romero Church.  Although not athletic, she encouraged her husband Tom in his running pursuits, as well as enthusiastically supporting her children’s athletic endeavors.

Gladys’ life was based on family, faith and good works. We will never forget the lessons she taught us for living a good life, caring for neighbors and all who are in need.

Gladys is survived by her six children. Michael of Quincy, David and his wife Bette of Foxboro, Thomas and his wife Haydie of Medford, Grace and her husband Anthony Cardella of Stoughton, Stephen and his wife Jill of Chelmsford, and James and his wife Kristi of Sutton. Gladys is also survived by her two dear sisters, Janet Salwa and Elaine Crudup and her husband, Lawney Crudup. She was pre-deceased by her brother, William Keenan, and two sisters, Shirley Carr Donovan and June Keilty. She is also survived by eight grandchildren and two great- grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Gladys spent the last two years residing at Cornerstone at Canton after living on Patriot’s Drive for fifty-three years. The family would like to thank the staff at Cornerstone for their love and support. Special thanks to Nicole’s Girls and Barbara Berrelus, mom’s aide in particular, for her gentle and loving care of mom.

The Funeral Mass will be at St. Oscar Romero Church (formerly St. John’s) on Thursday, August 24, 2023 at 11:30 AM. Visiting hours will be held at the Dockray and Thomas Funeral Home, 455 Washington Street, Canton on Thursday morning prior to the funeral, from  9:30 to 11:00 AM.  Burial will be held at Knollwood Memorial Park, Canton. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend the services.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Gladys’ name may be sent to Friends of the Unborn of Quincy, P.O. Box 692246, Quincy MA 02269 or the Stoughton Food Pantry, 116 Seaver Street, Stoughton, MA 02072.

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