Ipswich — Joseph W. Reilly, 87, husband of Eleanore (Sklarz) Reilly of Appleton Park, Ipswich, died Sunday, July 1, in his home following his long illness.
Born in Ipswich on December 9, 1925, he was the son of the late James D. and Sylvia (Poirier) Reilly. Raised in Ipswich, he was a member of Ipswich High School, Class of 1943.
In 1942, as a high school sophomore, he left school to enter the U.S. Navy. For four years, he served aboard the battleship USS Texas, serving in the Atlantic, at the beaches of Normandy and Southern France, and later in the Pacific, shelling the islands Iwo Jima and Okinawa. Following his honorable discharge, he returned to Ipswich and completed high school, graduating in 1947. When his country again called at the time of the Korean Conflict, he reenlisted in the U.S. Air Force, serving stateside and in Europe on fighter support bases.
He was married in 1953 at the former Sacred Heart Church in Ipswich. The Reillys made their home on Mineral Street, Ipswich. For twelve years, Mr. Reilly was employed at Sylvania in Ipswich and most recently for the Town of Ipswich as a custodian at the town hall, police station, and middle school, from which he retired in 1990.
Joe was an avid Red Sox and Patriots fan, having had Patriots' season tickets for the past 25 years.
He was a member of Our Lady of Hope Church in Ipswich, and proud member of Ipswich V.F.W. Post #1093 and Ipswich American Legion Post #80.
In addition to his wife of 60 years, he is survived by many nephews, nieces, great-nephews and great-nieces; a great-great-niece; and his loyal feline friend of many years, Abigail. He was the brother of the late James D. Reilly Jr., formerly of Ipswich.
Joe will always be remembered as a happy, caring man to all who knew him and loved him. His family will miss his smiling face and gentle soul.
ARRANGEMENTS: Funeral arrangements are private, and are by the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home of Ipswich. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in his name may be made to Hospice of the North Shore Greater Boston, Suite B102, 75 Sylvan St., Danvers, MA 01923, or Ipswich Humane Group, P.O. Box 873, Ipswich, MA 01938. To leave a condolence, please visit www.whittier-porter.com.