Obituaries 02-01-2018

Barbara Voke

Retired City of Chelsea Health Department Registered Nurse

Barbara A. (Murphy) Voke, a 60 year resident of Chelsea, entered eternal rest Thursday morning, Jan. 25 at the Chelsea Jewish Nursing Home. She was 87 years old.

Born in Somerville, the daughter of the late Thomas and Katherine (Murphy) Murphy, Barbara attended school in Somerville and graduated from St. Joseph’s High School in 1948.  After high school, Barbara completed the nursing program at the former Whidden Hospital in Everett.  She worked as a registered nurse at the Whidden Hospital and the City of Chelsea Health Department, before retiring in 1998.

As her health declined, Barbara moved to the Chelsea Jewish Nursing Home.

The Voke family would like to thank all the nurses and staff who tended to and cared for Barbara while she resided at the nursing home.

Barbara was a parishioner of Our Lady of Grace Church in Chelsea and a late member of the Church choir.  She will be deeply missed by all who loved her.

The wife of the late John H. Voke, she was the beloved mother of Jay Voke of Chelsea, Ann M. Needle and her husband, Jeffrey of Stow, Ellen M. Morris of Methuen, mother-in-law of the late Robert Morris, dear sister of E. Nancy Leonard of Malden, sister-in-law of the late Henry Leonard and is also lovingly survived by four grandchildren: Nathan Needle of Malden, Kathryn “Katy” Needle of Rhode Island, Elizabeth C. Morris and John H. Morris, both of Methuen.

A Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at Our Lady of Grace Church on Monday. Arrangements were by the Carafa Family Funeral Home in Chelsea.  Interment was private.  Donations in Barbara’s memory may be made to Our Lady of Grace Church, Attn:  Haiti Feed the Children, 59 Nichols St., Chelsea, MA 02150.

John J. “Jay” Thompson

March 1, 1951 – January 25, 2018

After a lifelong battle with a variety of disabilities, John J. Thompson died peacefully on Thursday, Jan. 25 surrounded by his family at Twin Oaks Nursing Home in Danvers where he had been receiving supportive care for the past seven years. He was 66 years old.

Born and raised in Chelsea, he was the son of the late Clifford H. and Agnes (O’Brien) Thompson. “Jay”, as he was known to his family and friends, attended Saint Rose Elementary School, graduated from Chelsea High School in 1969, and received an Associate’s Degree in Political Science from Bunker Hill Community College.

In his younger years, he was an avid reader of American History and participated in political campaigns on the state level.  Jay held a variety of jobs; working at Wonderland racetrack as a handler, at the Boston Herald on the sports desk, and for the Bunker Hill Community College newspaper, before retiring as a bridge inspector for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. Jay enjoyed following all sports, especially the Boston Celtics and NY Giants. Throughout everything, he remained stoic, uncomplaining, and appreciative of the nurses and staff who have helped him.

Jay will be greatly missed by those who knew him.   His courage and perseverance in the face of great adversity provided an inspiration to all.

 He is survived by his beloved life-companion Lori Henry of Lynn. He was the dear brother of Clifford Thompson and his wife, Julia of Lexington, Michael Thompson and his wife, Claire of West Peabody and Glenn Thompson and his wife, Jill of Dallas, TX;  the cherished uncle of Clifford Barton, Caitlyn, Michael, Brittany, and Sam Thompson. He is also survived by several cousins and extended family members.

Funeral arrangements were by the Frank A. Welsh & Sons Funeral Home, Chelsea.  Interment was at Holy Cross Cemetery, Malden.  In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in Jay’s memory to the Epilepsy Foundation, 8301 Professional Pl., Ste. 200, Landover, MD 20785 or the National Stuttering Foundation.

James ‘Bear’ Burke

Retired Chelsea Water Department Foreman, active with Chelsea youth

James P. “Bear” Burke, a lifelong resident of Chelsea, passed away on Jan. 24. at the Massachusetts General Hospital at the age of 75. For over 30 years, he was employed by the City of Chelsea in the Public Works Department, and for a number of years, until his retirement in the late 2000’s, was the foreman for the department. A 4th Degree Knight with Chelsea Council # 83, “Bear” was extremely active with the youth of Chelsea.  He was associated with and on the Board of Directors of the Chelsea Pop Warner as well coached Little League and Babe Ruth Baseball. An avid Boston Sports fan, he enjoyed spending time with his large family at all gatherings.

He was the devoted son of the late William F. and Rose M. (Mollica) Burke, beloved brother of Robert Burke of Worcester, Virginia Milliken of Keane, NH, Elizabeth Havens of Garland, TX, Joseph Burke of Randolph, Gerald Burke of Brandon, MS, Nicholas Burke of Randolph and the late Jenny Gallant, Mary Cooksey, John Burke, Marjorie Parsons, Catherine O’Connor, Alice Rimcus, Teresa Attardi, William Burke, Helen MacAfee, Esther Way and Miriam Mullen.  He is also lovingly survived by his devoted nieces, Paula Boczkowski and Linda Roberts, both of Chelsea as well as many more nieces, nephews, grandnieces and grandnephews. Funeral arrangements were by the Smith Funeral Home, Chelsea.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial contributions in James’ name be made to Chelsea Pop Warner, c/o Michelle Lopez, 240 Revere Beach Parkway, Chelsea, MA 02150. To send a message of condolence to Jim’s family, please visit

Rita Eriesian

Mother and grandmother, who with her grace, kindness, compassion, and unconditional love, taught the true meaning of love of family

Rita (Camarot, Pinksten) Eriesian, born on the Fourth of July in 1932, passed away at age 85 on Jan. 22 after an 11 year battle with Alzheimers disease.

She will forever be in the hearts and minds of her beloved children, Michael Pinksten and his fiancée, Gina White of Chester, NH, Sharon Pinksten and her fiancé, Mark Williams and Steven Pinksten all of Chelsea and Jim Pinksten and his fiancée, Shauna Mulcahy of Everett; her adored grandchildren, Alanna and Michael Sokoloski, Erik Haywood and her great-granddaughter, Natalia.

Rita was the cherished daughter of Daniel and Albina (Domenichiello) Camarot. She grew up in Chelsea with her late siblings, Daniel and Mildred (Tucci). She married her childhood sweetheart James Pinksten in 1951 and together they raised their four children in Chelsea and Revere.

Rita had a strong love for Boston which started with her first job as a saleswoman and hand glove model at RH Stearns Department Store. In later years, she worked at Leonard Silver Mfg. Co and the law firm of Goodwin Proctor and Hoar. Rita enjoyed talking about the many memories of the friends and colleagues she made over the years.

After her marriage to Edward Eriesian in 1990, Rita resided in Lynn and she enjoyed travelling to Las Vegas and Florida with her lifelong friends Margaret and Bob Spinney and cousins Peggy and Ken Greene.

 What brought Rita the most joy in life were her children and grandchildren who have sorely missed spending each and every holiday at her home, her daily phone calls providing weather and traffic updates to start their day, and Sunday dinners at her house where she served chicken cutlets that no one has been able to make as well as she did. We will be forever grateful that it was she who was our Mother and Grandmother, who with her grace, kindness, compassion, and unconditional love taught us the true meaning of the love of family.

Her family would like to extend their gratefulness to the caregivers at both Prospect House Assisted Living and Memory Care and the Lighthouse Nursing Care Center in Revere for the wonderful care they provided to her over the past nine years.

Funeral arrangements were by the Paul Buonfiglio & Sons-Bruno Funeral Home,  Revere.   For guest book please

Louella Harper

Of Winthrop

Louella Harper of Winthrop died on Jan. 28.

The beloved wife of Thomas Yourawski, she was the devoted mother of Cathy Mathews and her husband, Thomas of New Hampshire, formerly of Revere, cherished grandmother of Justin, Devan, and Jennafer Puopolo and dear sister of David Wohlman of Beverly.  She is also survived by many loving nieces, nephews and cousins.

Her Funeral was held from the Paul Buonfiglio & Sons-Bruno Funeral Home, 128 Revere St, Revere followed by a Funeral Mass at St. Anthony’s Church. Interment was at Puritan Lawn Memorial Park.  For guest book, please

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