A kind-hearted woman who loved her family



NORTH READING — Gail E. (Downey) Strong, 83, of North Reading and formerly of Wakefield, died Tuesday, January 18, 2022 at the Royal Meadow View Nursing Center in North Reading.

Born in Melrose on October 11, 1938, she was the daughter of the late Gordan and Grace (Powell) Downey. She was raised and attended school in Wakefield and was graduate of Wakefield High School.

She was a receptionist for Wingate Financial Services in Bedford for 25 years and she worked for Dutchmaid Clothing as an independent contractor while her sons were school-age. Gail has been a resident of North Reading for the past 60 years.

Gail was a kind-hearted woman who loved her family. She always kept the peace rather than engaging in a conflict. She enjoyed spending time in New Brunswick with relatives in her youth and as an adult spending time with her Canadian cousins as time allowed. She was a sports fan, especially the Red Sox, and she loved spending summers in Rangeley, Maine. Gail coached in the original Flower Power Softball League. She took pride in attending her children’s sporting events and raising her family in the Mount Vernon Street neighborhood.

Family members include her loving sons, Jeff Strong of North Reading, Daniel Strong and his wife, Heidi, of Milton, N.H. and Christopher Strong and his wife, Christine, of Hampton, N.H.; two granddaughters, Nicole and Amy Strong. She was predeceased by her former husband, John Strong and her brother, Rae Downey and his wife Jeanne.

The family would like to thank the staff at Royal Meadow View, including the Care Dimensions Hospice Service, and also the staff at The Residence at Pearl Street for taking good care of Gail in her failing health.

Visitation will be held at the Croswell Funeral Home, 19 Bow Street, North Reading on Sunday, January 23 from 2 to 4 p.m., followed by a prayer service at 3:30 p.m.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations may be made in her memory to the charity of one’s choice. To sign an online message of condolence please visit www.croswellfuneralhome.com.