James Howard McLaughlin 1925-2022
James Howard McLaughlin, passed away at the Holyoke Soldiers Home, Holyoke MA at the age of 96 on October 20, 2022. Born December 29, 1925 in Massillon Ohio, he was the son of the late Elder McLaughlin and Helen McLaughlin (Brankel). He was one of two children, having one sister, Eileen who predeceased him. Mac grew up in Ohio graduating from Massillon High School, he enlisted in the Navy in 1943 until his honorable discharge in 1946. He worked as an aircraft mechanic during World War II, earning the rank of Aviation Machinist Mate. Mac attended Great Lake Naval Training and served at Norman Air station in Norman Oklahoma and in Atlanta, Georgia. He earned the American Campaign Medal and the WWII Victory Medal. Married to Norma Jean Jacoby together they had a daughter Amy McLaughlin. Following his discharge he worked at the Timken Roller Bare Company for 33 years, where he made roller-bearing parts and inspected them. He retired at the age of 55 and then continued working odd jobs including painting, bartending and one of his favorites working on the railroad doing track labor, he loved to help people with anything, he mowed lawns, provided rides, and repaired cars. Throughout his life he loved the Red Sox, Patriots, hunting, reading, dogs, music, a cup of coffee, and his sweets. He was a member of the American Legion, the Masons, the American Legion Drum Corporation, the Shriners Drum Corps where he played his Bugle. Mac moved from Ohio to Southwick the be closer to his daughter Amy, who was the light of his life. He then lived in Zephyrhills Fl. For several years until 2004, during which time he made many trips to attend family birthdays and special occasions, most importantly – the birthdays of his grandsons Charlie and Josh. He had an especially close relationship with his grandsons whom he cherished. Moving to Westfield in 2004 living independently until 2019 when he moved to the Soldier’s Home, where he especially enjoyed visits and calls from Amy and his son-in- law Don. He enjoyed the company of his fellow veterans, musical events, coffee, many laughs, stories, and songs. Mac always had a twinkle in his eye and a song in his heart. Mac leaves his daughter Amy Galaska & son -in-law Donny Galaska, cherished grandsons Charlie and Josh Galaska. Mac will be dearly missed by his daughter Amy, son-in-law Donny and his twin grandsons Charlie and Josh. Amy and Donny would like to thank the wonderful people of the Holyoke Soldier’s for all the love and respect they provided for the past three years.
His burial was in the Massachusetts Memorial Veterans Cemetery in Agawam, per Mac’s wishes all services were simple and private, the Williamsburg Funeral Home was entrusted with his care.