Obituary for William D. O'Brien – Hathaway Funeral Homes

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Today we mourn the loss, but more importantly celebrate the life of William D. O’Brien. William was a wonderful caring man who lived his life well. Young at heart, he had an incredible sense of humor. He passed peacefully on the night of December 10th surrounded by the love of his family. He left this world the same way he lived in it, creating magic everywhere he went.

His personality would light up a room and all who had the joy of meeting him would tell you he was vibrant and unforgettable. His family, his dog Roxy & his closest friends were his world. He was always making the most of the good times, ready with a quick witted joke and flashing a welcoming smile. He loved to travel, dance, sing, play cards, golf, ski & to spend time with the ones he loved.
Bill was the son of the late William C. O’Brien and Lillian (Lewis) O’Brien of Somerset, Ma. He was one of nine children and the brother to the late Leonard O’Brien, Norman O’Brien, Chester O’Brien, Clinton O’Brien, Pauline (O’Brien) Majuro, Maureen (O’Brien) Spruce, Geraldine (O’Brien) Green, and survived by his sister Ann Marie (O’Brien) Copley.
William graduated with the class of 1949 at Somerset High school after serving his country in World War II. He attended Johnson and Wales for drafting then after some schooling started as a draftsman in the steel industry. With that training and mentorship he moved up through the trade and in 1986 opened his own company, W.D. O’Brien Company Inc. He worked on commercial, state and privately bid contracts but he had a particular affinity for historic buildings.
He was a member of the Associated General Contractors for America with both state & national affiliation. He served on the board of the local 1305 carpenters union for many years. During his tenure, he worked with the training and mentorship programs for the apprentice program passing down knowledge until his retirement. Some of his work can still be seen at Battleship Cove Fall River, The Fisherman’s Union Hall in New Bedford and The Candleworks Restaurant in New Bedford.

He was happily married to Lillian-Ann (Murphy) O’Brien in June 1954 until her passing in 1992 & again happily married to Charlotte (Patty Keough) O’Brien in 2000 to present day.

His family meant everything to him & he was fortunate enough to have 4 children from his first marriage, 2 additional by marriage. Among them are Jeffrey O’Brien & wife Joan O’Brien,  Kathleen (O’Brien) Orsini & Husband Bill Orsini, June (O’Brien) Silvia & Husband Michael Silvia, Peggy (O’Brien) Angelo & Husband James Angelo, Sean Keough and his partner Jennie Foster, and Bridget Keough and her fiance Jon Knudsen.
“Papa” as he was affectionately known, by his energetic 12 grandchildren & 6 great grandchildren made him smile everyday. Among his grandchildren are Peter O’Brien of OR, William O’Brien of NY, Alecia Orsini Lebeda, Owen Orsini, Delinda (Martelle) Robinson of NH, Kyle Angelo, Cara Angelo, Jack Angelo, and Atticus Krauss, Riley, Caspian and Sage Phillips of RI.
Among his great grandchildren are Landon, Kali, and Kinsley Robinson of NH, Finnley and Sawyer Orsini Lebeda and Ethan O’Brien of OR. He is also a beloved Uncle to many nieces & nephews, and has always been close to his late wife Ann Murphy’s side of the family.
The family would like to personally thank Rachel, Carissa & Inez, for embracing our family and caring so deeply for William and us compassionately through the past 4 years.
William will be remembered as the life of the party, full of humor, with a twinkle in his eyes and love for all those he met.
Services and a celebration of life will be held at Hathaway Community Home for Funerals, 900 Buffinton Street, Somerset, MA on Friday December 16, 2022. At time of visitation will be held from 10 – 12pm with a Celebration of Life Service at 12pm. Burial to follow at St. Patrick Cemetery in Somerset.
Bill wouldn't want you to spend your money on flowers, instead we please ask you to continue his tradition of caring for others. Please honor William’s memory with a charitable gift towards the following:
~  To the family of his beloved granddaughter whom he helped raise, Delinda Robinson, for a Service Dog for his great grandchildren to better their lives.
Please send to: 
Delinda Robinson 
92 Millville Street Salem, NH 03079 
~ To Massachusetts General Hospital in honor of his grandson so they can continue their efforts to research & find a cure for Pediatric Cancer. 
Please Send to: 
MGH Pediatric Hematology/Oncology 
Attn: Howard Weinstein 
Yawkey 8B, 55 Fruit Street Boston Mass, 02114
When I'm gone, release me, let me go.
I have so many things to see and do
You mustn't tie yourself to me with tears.
Be happy that we had as many years.
I gave you my love: you can only guess
How much you gave me in happiness.
I thank you for the love you each have shown,
But now it's time I travel on alone.
So grieve a while for me, if grieve you must.
Then let your grief be comforted by trust.
It's only for a while that we must part,
So bless the memories within your heart.
I won't be far away, for life goes on.
So if you need me, call and I will come.
Though you can't see or touch me I'll be near.
And if you listen with your heart, you'll hear
All my love around you soft and clear.
And when you must come this way alone
I'll greet you with a smile and a '
"Welcome Home."
To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of William D. O’Brien, please visit our floral store.

Delinda Robinson
92 Millville Street, Salem NH 03079

MGH Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Attn: Howard Weinstein Yawkey 8B
55 Fruit Street, Boston MD 02114


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