Frank Donnelly, 59, formerly a long-time resident of Hudson, NH who most recently lived in Derry, NH, passed away on Tuesday evening, October 11th, 2022 at his home surrounded by his loving family.
Frank was the beloved husband of 36 years to Mary (Whelan) Donnelly and a devoted father to his three children and their spouses, Kaitlyn and her husband Kevin Mackey, Brennan and his wife Amy Donnelly, and Caleb and his wife Erin Donnelly. Among Frank’s greatest joys in life was being a grandfather (or “Beets” as they called him) to his five grandchildren Jack, Maddie, Theo, Noah, and Luke. Over the years, he gained a reputation in town for never missing one of his children’s or grandchildren’s sports games and for being a “spirited” fan.
He was also a loyal brother to his eight siblings Edward Donnelly, Maureen Donnelly, Thomas Donnelly, James Donnelly, Theresa Donnelly, Mary McKenney, Sean Donnelly, and Joseph Donnelly while being known as a protector among them. Frank cared deeply about his many nieces and nephews, too. Siblings Edward and Theresa preceded Frank in death.
Frank was born on November 22, 1962 to the late Theresa (Sullivan) and Edward Donnelly and was raised in Lowell, Massachusetts. He graduated from Greater Lowell Technical High School in 1980, was a proud alumnus of the football and track & field teams, and an Athletic Hall of Fame inductee. During his senior year, Frank set the school’s one-mile record. He also still holds a relay record, was a captain for of his track & field team, and was voted Male Senior Athlete of the Year. Without a doubt, the fighting spirit that Frank exhibited back in the late 70s and early 80s was alive and well throughout his entire life. Into his fifties, Frank was a committed weightlifter including still participating in competitions, winning the bench press for his age group.
After graduating from the “Voke,” Frank built a strong faith in Jesus, a love for the Bible, and has since let his faith guide his life while displaying a heart for others. Over the last 30 years, Frank’s house in southern New Hampshire has been an open door to numerous foster children, aging in-laws, family, and friends. He often served in leadership roles at church, whether it was hosting weekly dinners and Bible studies at his home with Mary or leading Sunday School for the kids. If you ever needed help moving, needed a ride somewhere, or needed a father figure to be present, Frank was the one you called.
“I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith.” – 2 Timothy 4:6-7.
Memorial services will be held on Saturday, October 22, 2022 at Northeast Christian Church, 995 Andover Street, Tewksbury, MA. A time to offer condolences will start at 9:30am with the Celebration of Life beginning at 11am. Memorial donations in Frank's name may be made to BigEd.org.