Salem — After a long illness, Jean–Paul Dionne, husband for 60 years of Jane (Doyle) Dionne, and son of Elisha J. and Virginia Dionne, passed away on November 17, at home, surrounded by his family. The week before his demise, he and his wife renewed their marriage vows, with his family present, and Rev. Laura Biddle presiding.
He was a lifelong resident of Salem and had lived at Salem Willows since 1961. He graduated from Salem Vocational School and attended Salem High School.
He enlisted in the U.S. Navy in 1948, and served on both the Pacific and Atlantic Coasts on the U.S.S. Perkins, the U.S.S. Picking, the U.S.S. Yosemite, and the U.S.S. FDR. While on the Pacific Coast, he witnessed the atomic bomb testing at Aniwtok, and was on the Perkins when they participated in the evacuation of the Chinese Embassy. While on the Picking, he served in the Korean War. He sailed on two around-the-world cruises in the Navy, and left the service after 13 years, in 1960. He was a disabled veteran.
Jean worked for many years as a fleet mechanic for J.J. Cronin Co. in North Reading.
Over the years, he served in many capacities and offices at the Tabernacle Congregational Church in Salem. He was chair of the property committee, sang in the choir, taught Sunday School, served on the missions committee, chaired the annual Friendship Fair for nine years, and for several years chaired the Vacation Bible School held in conjunction with the First Baptist Church.
Mr. Dionne also served on the board of directors of the Brookhouse Home for Women and Plummer Home for Boys.
In addition to his wife, he leaves three children, Paul and his wife, Susan, of Derry, N.H., Ellen White and her husband, Kevin, of Salem, and John and his wife, Susan, of Gloucester. He leaves his greatest joy, his grandchildren, Cowan, Erin, Kathryn, Benjamin, Alyssa, Tony and his wife, Caitlyn, Colin, Hannah, and Aidan; and great-grandchildren, Isabella, Evan and Frank. A lover of golden retrievers, he also leaves his loyal dog, Honey.