RN, founded ‘Knitizens’ after 9/11 to support troops

Published in the July 21, 2017 edition

Barbara-Galvin-obit-7-21-17_webSAUGUS — Barbara A. (Driscoll) Galvin, 84, of Saugus, formerly of Melrose, died peacefully surrounded by family on July 15, 2017.

Barbara was born in Chelsea on November 27, 1932 to William and Agnes (Lynn) Driscoll. She was raised in Melrose and graduated from Melrose High School. Barbara went on to obtain a nursing degree from Chelsea Memorial Nursing School after high school.

After becoming a registered nurse, Barbara went to work at Melrose-Wakefield Hospital. She became a devoted wife and mother and enjoyed spending her spare time sewing and knitting, as well as passing the knowledge to her family and friends.

She was also very supportive of members of the armed services. Following the September 11, 2001 attacks, Barbara and a few of her friends felt the need to do something for the troops, so she helped start a knitting group at the Saugus Senior Center. Barbara was a driving force and worked tirelessly for this project for over 15 years. She helped grow the initial group of three women to over 30 volunteers who call themselves the “Knitizens.” The members have made over 30,000 knitted, crocheted and sewn goods, such as, hats, socks and blankets for the men and women serving our country and for VA hospitals. The group was featured on a Fox News segment, “Real People, Real Stories.” Barbara was fond of saying that her knitted gifts were “a hug from home.”

She was also a passionate Patriots fan and never missed a game. Family always came first for Barbara; she loved them beyond words. Her happiest times were up at the family cottage on Bonny Eagle Lake in Maine. She spent 70 years going there and was able to travel there one last time this summer. Barbara will be missed by all who had the privilege to know her.

She was the beloved wife of the late Paul J. Galvin Sr. She was the loving mother of Lynda A. Galvin of Saugus, Paul J. Galvin Jr. and his wife Karen of Methuen, and Catherine M. Wilson and her husband Daniel of Tewksbury. She was the cherished grandmother of Colleen, Kerry, Kristen, Courtney and Daniel. She was also the proud great-grandmother of Lincoln. She was predeceased by her brother, Richard J. Driscoll.

Visiting hours were held on Wednesday, July 19 at the Gately Funeral Home, 79 West Foster St., Melrose. Her funeral procession from the Gately Funeral Home took place on Thursday, July 20, which was followed by a funeral Mass at Blessed Sacrament Church, 14 Summer St., Saugus. Interment was private.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospice of Southern Maine, Gosnell Memorial Hospice House, 11 Hunnewell Rd., Scarborough ME 04074 or Local Heroes, 26 Allen Park Dr., Wilmington MA 01887 (c/o Louis Cimaglia). To leave an online message of condolence, visit gatelyfh.com.