Thomas M.'s Story

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Thomas Michael Kennedy of Marblehead, Mass., passed away peacefully on January 7, 2017, at the Kaplan House in Danvers after a long, courageous battle with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. He was 57 years-old.
Tom was an eternal optimist. He had a contagious laugh with an infectious smile and always had a positive word to say about everyone he met. He was quick to ask about you while expressing genuine interest. A lover of sports, the outdoors, and gardening, Tom kept up his running both in races and with friends until nearly the end of his life. He was happiest spending time with his family, coaching youth sports, and walking the family’s two Golden Retrievers. True to his character, he remained hopeful and kept a sense of humor at every stage of his illness. Although unable to enjoy life to the fullest for the past few years, Tom always found peace at his family’s lake house in Maine.
Tom was born and raised in Swampscott. He graduated from Swampscott High School, earned his Bachelor’s degree in business from North Adams State College, and later an MBA from Suffolk University. While his 22-year career began at Braun, he spent most of his working life with the Gillette Company, working in sales and marketing for a variety of consumer products. Throughout his career Tom made many friends and was highly respected by his colleagues.
Tom met the love of his life, Helen Gleason Kennedy, in Marblehead, where they married and raised their rambunctious four boys. Being with his wife and sons was the greatest joy of his life, whether attending sporting events or vacationing in Maine at his family lake house. Besides his family, his other true love was hockey. He was involved with the Marblehead Youth Hockey Association for many years coaching, serving on the board, and also as president. Hundreds of Marblehead kids learned how to skate with Coach Kennedy. More importantly, he taught them to love the game and to have fun and not worry about the score. Amazingly enough, he found time to assist in many other volunteer organizations that his wife dragged him into, and was also a longtime member of the Corinthian Yacht Club.
Tom leaves behind his wife, Helen; their sons, Chase, his wife, Grace, and their baby, James, Dylan, Reed, and Camden; his mother, Audrey; his siblings, David and his wife, Connie of Georgia; Michael and his wife, Janine of Minnesota; Martha and her husband, Tim Murphy of Cambridge; and Kristin and her husband, Don Geraghty of Danvers; and Helen’s sister, Ann Gleason and her partner, Fred Green of Colorado. Tom also leaves behind a large extended family including nieces, nephews, and many friends. Tom was predeceased by his late father, Leonard Nelson Kennedy.
To celebrate Tom’s life, a memorial service will be held at the Old North Church, 35 Washington Street, Marblehead, MA on Friday, January 27, at 11 a.m.
Donations may be made to The McCourt Foundation in memory of Thomas M. Kennedy to support Alzheimer's research, 100 Grandview Road, Suite 212, Braintree, MA 02184 or to the Marblehead Youth Hockey Association, P.O. Box 1426, Marblehead, MA 01945, in memory of Thomas M. Kennedy.
Arrangements by Eustis and Cornell of Marblehead. To share a memory or to offer a condolence, please visit www.eustisandcornellfuneralhome.com.
Published on  January 20, 2017
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