Hill Happenings

Photo by John Clifford The late Jimmy Casey (second row from top, far right) was a member of the 1979 Killilea Club Football championship team, pictured here at Dorchester’s Town Field.

By Maurice “Mossy” Martin
Special to the Gazette

Condolences to the family of Jimmy Casey, who passed away May 29 after a long illness. Jimmy, a loving family man, leaves his wife Kerry (Harris) and three children. He was a hard worker and a member of the pipefitter and refrigerator union Local 537.

I fondly remember Jimmy as my teammate on the 1979 Killilea Club Football championship team. Jimmy was a gritty linebacker and he enjoyed the camaraderie of the team.

On May 28, Jimmy’s beautiful daughter, Maeve Casey, received her First Holy Communion at Mission Church. Jimmy cheerfully attended the ceremony, despite his failing health. The following day, Jimmy slipped into a coma and passed away.

Jimmy’s brother-in-law, Robert Curran, adeptly encapsulated Jimmy’s personality: “Nobody said a bad word about Jimmy. He had no enemies.”

Billy Mullin and Virginia Mullin celebrated their 40th wedding anniversary on June 11 with a joyous gathering at the Harvard Club in Boston, featuring fine cuisine, cold beer and music by DeZyne. The happy couple, who are Mission High School graduates, were joined by their four terrific children, many relatives and a plethora of thirsty Mission Hill revelers.

Billy offered a toast to George “The Colonel” Rollins, who couldn’t attend because he is in Afghanistan serving his country. Ironically, George was unavailable for Billy and Ginny’s wedding on Jne 11, 1971 because he was attending West Point, where he graduated in 1973.

Ginny and her 1968 Mission High graduates who attended the function were looking fine, including loyal Gazette reader Deirde Casey (Lawless) and my high school prom date, Ellen Daley (Napolitano).

Billy Mullin, who graduated from Harvard University in 1971, incidentally, was the intramural boxing champion at Harvard in 1968. He is current the president of NE Moves Mortgage, LLC.

Mission Hill mourned the loss of John “Stats” Utterson, who passed away May 31. John, a Mission High School graduate, was a Vietnam-era veteran, having served in the U.S. Army. He worked at NSTAR for 41 years. John loved life and he enjoyed a healthy laugh. Thinking back to the old days at Ed Burke’s Tavern and the Peter Bent Lounge (aka The Gong Show), I recall John utilizing his biting wit at appropriate occasions. John was loved by his comrades at the Mission Hill Post 327, where he served as commander a few years back.

Former Mission Hill resident Bill “Fats” O’Brien passed away last month at age 69. Bill, a retired MBTA bus driver, was instrumental in the success of the Mission Hill Softball League. Bill was president of the league in the early ’70s and he was the manager of the Ed Burke’s Tavern team. During those early years of the league, large crowds would gather at McLaughlin Park to watch the terrific players and the colorful personalities of the managers, including Fats, Bill “The Owl” McMullen and the legendary Jack Kelley. Fats was so involved in managing the Burke’s team that he had his friend John Utterson do the book as the team’s official scorekeeper. From that point, the pair was lovingly referred to as “Fats and Stats.”

Sixteen local golfers enjoyed their annual golfing vacation in Casco, Maine last month. Among the elite Mission Hill golfers who participated were Paul MacDougall, Jimmy Sheehan, Rex Tayag and John Nagle. The trip coincided with the Bruins Stanley Cup games. When the Bruins won the seventh game, avid fan Fran Toner celebrated by setting off fireworks, to the delight of the Maine natives. When Fran isn’t golfing or setting off firecrackers, he is Sgt. Toner, a dedicated campus police officer at the Shattuck Hospital. Boston Police Officer Sean Deery also participated in the golfing vacation. The affable policeman reported that everyone was well-behaved.

God bless my friend Theresa Parks, who just celebrated her 75th birthday with friends and family at the Flynn House at Mission Park. Local good guy Barry Twomey summed up how people feel about Theresa. Said Barry to Theresa, “Please adopt me.”

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