TEWKSBURY, Mass. — Donald R. Ordway, age 78, born in Barre, lifelong family patriarch and 53-year resident of Tewksbury, Massachusetts, died peacefully on June 9, 2018, at his home in Tewksbury, surrounded by his devoted wife and children. He was the beloved husband of 58 years of Jo Ann M. (Gagné) Ordway. He retired in 1997 as district manager at DataTape Inc., headquartered in Pasadena, California.
Don was born in Barre, Vermont, and was the son of the late Merlyn and Pauline (Scott) Ordway. He graduated from Spaulding High School, Class of 1957, and went on to serve in the U.S. Marine Corps Reserve. After his marriage, they moved to Boston and then settled in Tewksbury, to raise their family.
Along with being a devoted father, Don was a communicant of St. William’s Church, guided the Tewksbury Republican Town Committee for 20 years, preceded by many passioned roles supporting the Boy Scouts, town elections, the Elks and at that time, a perennial Little League manager. He cherished the weekly family gatherings for “Sunday dinners” and barbecues.
His employment a t DataTape required extensive travel throughout the northeast U.S. and Canada. In retirement, Don continued his travels with his wife by annually driving cross country, always with a pilgrimage to presidential libraries and museums, to the beaches of Dana Point and the deserts of Palm Springs.
Besides his wife, he leaves four children, Mark P. Ordway and his fiancée, Cathi Ingersoll, of Melrose, Cynthia M. Nash and her husband, Robert, of Tyngsborough, Lisa A. Tufts, of Manchester, New Hampshire, and David E. Ordway and his wife, Linda, of Londonderry, New Hampshire; nine grandchildren, David, Christopher and Tyler Ordway, Robert and Lauren Nash, Ryan and Kelly Tufts, Courtney and Justin Ordway; two brothers, Douglas Ordway and his wife, Van, of Tucson, Arizona, and Brian Zecchinelli and his wife, Karen, of Berlin, Vermont; and many nieces and nephews. Don was predeceased by his great-grandson, Owen Alexander Tufts.
Don was forever proud of the war sacrifices of his father, Merlyn, and those of his uncles Howard and Allen Scott who were all heroes who gave immeasurable service to our country during WWII.
Don led by the virtue of his faith and the power of his example. He gave much love and received much love. His sense of humor and strength always prevailed.
Visiting hours are Wednesday, June 13, from 4 until 7 p.m. in the Tewksbury Funeral Home, corner of One Dewey and 975 Main St. (Route 38), Tewksbury Center, Phone (800) in Massachusetts or (978) 851-2950. His funeral will begin Thursday, June 14, at 10:30 a.m. from the funeral home, followed by a funeral Mass Thursday, June 14, at 11:30 a.m. in St. William’s Church, 1351 Main St. (Route 38), Tewksbury. Burial will follow in St. Mary Cemetery, North Tewksbury. In lieu of flowers, memorials to St. William’s Church, 1351 Main St., Tewksbury, MA 01876, will be greatly appreciated. tewksburyfuneralhome.com