76, of Methuen (formerly of Natick) passed away Friday, February 28th in Boston. Devoted father to Rayann MacDonald (Kevin) of Hopedale, Robyn Howley (Scott Macdonald) of Texas, and Renee Howley of Natick. Former husband of Anna Howley (Hannigan) of Natick. Loving Papa to Ella and Ryan MacDonald, and Lily Macdonald. Brother of George Howley of Milford, Arlene Segool of Billerica, Marilyn Reed of South Carolina, Diana Traynor of Maine, Patricia Howley of Watertown, and the late Robert Howley. Son of the late George and Takle (Brench) Howley of Newton.
Born in Boston on November 15, 1943, Allan spent his early years growing up in Newton and Brighton and enjoyed playing with his neighborhood friends (who as adults meet regularly for their ‘Bums Corner’ Reunion), raising pigeons, shining shoes at the Lincoln Street Tavern, and moving cattle at the Stockyards. An avid diver, he was a member of the Tide Runners, as well as a volunteer for underwater rescue and recovery. His friends referred to him as ‘Hawk’. After graduating from Brighton High School he worked a variety of jobs including Ups and Down Wrecking, Roadway, and Lewis and Shepherd until he found his career as a sheet metal worker at Raytheon where he retired in 2009.
In 1977, Allan and his growing family moved to Natick where he enjoyed raising his girls, working on the house and in the yard, as well as fishing Dug Pond with his buddies. Weddings and 50’s Rock and Roll nights with Little Walter gave him the chance to show off his dance skills. He loved turkey dinners, chocolate honey dipped donuts, old cars, watching old westerns and war movies, and being in nature. He was happiest when he was surrounded by family, and enjoyed a close relationship with his former in-laws and their families often talking Boston sports over dinner. Later in life he absolutely loved being a Papa to his three grandkids and would enjoy getting down on the floor with them and playing; they brought him so much joy. He also enjoyed traveling and seeing new places.
Several years ago Allan was diagnosed with Esophageal Cancer which changed the trajectory of his life to a journey of fighting what many call ‘The Beast’. His daughter Renee became his caregiver and advocate through his treatments at Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Brigham & Women’s Hospital. Always a favorite of the nurses, he loved to share stories of his youth and make them laugh with his sense of humor. He would always have his iPod with him to play his ‘Rock and Roll’ during treatments. One thing that was learned during his journey is that this cancer has very few early warning signs. If you have chronic heartburn, indigestion or GERD, regardless if you are 22 or 72, please get checked out with an upper endoscopy. To learn more about Esophageal Cancer warning signs visit www.ecaware.org.
Funeral in the chapel of John Everett & Sons Funeral Home, 4 Park Street Natick Common on Tuesday, March 10th at 11am followed by interment at St. Patrick Cemetery. Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend. Visiting Hours on Monday, March 9th from 4-8 pm at the funeral home. In his memory, donations may be made to Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, P.O. Box 849168, Boston, MA 02284-9168 and designated for Esophageal Cancer Research.
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