Obituary for Mary Donovan (Nuttall)
SHREWSBURY - Mary T. Donovan of Framingham, formerly of Shrewsbury and Norwood, died Friday afternoon, January 25, on the eve of her 89th birthday. Beloved wife of the late William C. Donovan, she leaves seven children, William Jr. of Westborough, Denis of Medford, James of Chicago, Margaret Elliott of Guilford, CT, Anne Donovan Potter of Brooklyn, NY, Mary C. of Northampton, and John of Brooklyn, NY; three sons-in-law, Harry Elliott, Andrew Potter and Chip Kaye; and one daughter-in-law, Paula Stamatis; six grandchildren, Thomas and Kathleen Elliott, Owen Potter, and Nora and Natalie Kaye, and Zachary Donovan; and her sisters, Virginia Allen of Westerly, RI, and Grace Rooney of Framingham, MA. She was predeceased by her sister, Patricia Hickey, and her brother, Reverend James Nuttall.
A longtime editor and publisher of the Shrewsbury Voice, Mary was a talented writer and columnist known for her sharp wit and keen observations. Starting as a local reporter, Mary rose through the ranks of the Voice to lead the newspaper as publisher.
An active and forward-thinking member of the Catholic Church, Mary used her talents and leadership to tackle issues and build community. She was a founding member of the Commission for Women of the Diocese of Worcester, organizing conferences that put the spotlight on women’s issues in the Church and representing the Commission at national conferences in Cleveland, OH and Jacksonville, FL. A board member of the Catholic Free Press, Mary was also a contributing writer to that paper. In 2007, she was honored as one of Anna Maria College’s “Everyday Heroes” for her outstanding contributions to the community.
Close to her heart was St. Mary’s Parish, where she poured herself into church life. She was a CCD teacher, lector, and editor of the parish newsletter. Even after her move to Framingham, she kept close ties with the St. Mary’s community.
Mary was deeply committed to issues of peace and justice. She took an active stance on her beliefs during the Civil Rights era and Vietnam conflict, she advocated throughout her life on issues of poverty and, most recently, women’s issues.
She was born to Matilda (Maude) Coveney and Joseph Vincent Nuttall on January 26, 1924 in Boston. She attended Norwood High School and Wyndham Secretarial School in Boston. After raising her family, she studied at Clark University.
She was devoted to her large and lively family and her many friends. Mary (Mazo) loved hosting family shindigs, engaging in great conversation, watching the Red Sox and the races at Saratoga, camping with her family, and having travel adventures with her favorite companion, her husband Bill. They toured Ireland, France, Canada, and, of course, Cape Cod. She took wonderful care of her son Bill Jr., who has cerebral palsy, advocating and helping to foster his independence.
Relatives and friends are invited to attend visiting hours on Monday, January 28th, from 2 to 4 p.m. and 6 to 8 p.m. at the Britton-Shrewsbury Funeral Home, 648 Main St., Shrewsbury, MA. A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Tuesday, January 29th, at 10 a.m. at St. Mary’s Church, 640 Main St. Burial will follow at Mountain View Cemetery, Shrewsbury.