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Gary Matthew Gilligan

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SHEFFIELD — Gary Matthew Gilligan, 68, of Bow Wow Road in Sheffield died May 1, 2011, at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

A native and lifelong resident of Sheffield, Gary was born Nov. 23, 1942, the son of the late Eleanor (Cande) and Matthew Gilligan. He graduated from Mount Everett High School with the class of 1960 and in 1964 he received a Bachelor of Science degree in civil engineering from the University of Maine.

Gary is survived by his wife of 45 years, the former Janet Pendleton. The couple was married Aug. 1, 1965, in Islesboro, Maine.

Gary started working for his father, Matthew, at Gilligan Brothers construction company in Sheffield. Ultimately, Gary owned and operated the business along with his brother, John, and his late brother-in-law, Dick Coon.

An active member of his community, he served on numerous boards in Sheffield and was a member of the Sheffield Volunteer Hose Company for more than 20 years.

Gary liked to refer to himself as a farmer at heart. He raised chickens since boyhood and enjoyed caring for the many animals on his small farm. Gary took pleasure in the simple things in life. As a loving husband and father and beloved “Poppy” to his two grandchildren, his greatest joy in life was being with his family.

In addition to his wife, Gary is survived by three sons, Paul and his wife, Linda, of Bedford, N.H., Kevin of Salem, Conn., and Brian of Sheffield; two grandchildren, Matthew and Abigail of Bedford; his sister, Holly Coon; his brother, John Gilligan and his wife, Elsie, all of Sheffield; his brother-in-law, Harris Pendleton, of Belfast, Maine; and several cousins, nieces and nephews.

A service celebrating his life will be held Sunday, May 15, at 1p.m. at Old Parish Church in Sheffield, the Rev. Jill Graham officiating. Burial will be private.

Donations in Gary’s memory may be made to the Berkshire Humane Society through Finnerty & Stevens Funeral Home in Great Barrington, which has charge of the arrangements. Remembrances, memories and reflections may be sent to the family at www.finnertyandstevens.com.