Doris was born on January 15, 1927, in Somerville, MA; she was the dear daughter of the late Clayton Walsh and Alice (Doucette) Seymour. Doris was raised and educated in Wilmington and a graduate of Wilmington High School.
As a young lady, Doris worked for McLaughlin Pharmacy in Wilmington and throughout most of her career she was an electronics supervisor for the Sylvania and GTE Companies. Doris had a great work ethic and a wonderful personality; she made many long-time friends with her co-workers and they became her extended family.
Doris married “the love of her life” Ernie Balestrieri on July 15, 1945; the couple built their dream home and moved to Woburn in 1947 to the “Balestrieri Compound” where they were surrounded by family, friends and lots of love. To say Doris was “family oriented” was an understatement; she showered her family with love, compassion and understanding. She was never judgmental towards anyone and was always there to lend a hand or an ear to anyone in need. Doris was a devoted wife, mother, grandmother and a great homemaker. Doris enjoyed always having family around and she loved to host many family parties, special celebrations and holidays throughout the years. Doris was not only a wonderful mother to her own children she also treated her extended family of nieces and nephews as her own; she loved spending time with all of them. When Doris became a “Nana” and then a “Great-Nana” her life became even more full; she adored her grandchildren and looked forward to spending time with them and celebrating all of their special milestones.
Family was everything to Doris; she and “her Ernie” were like two peas in a pod and they did everything together. Doris looked forward to their trips to Hampton Beach every summer, day trip and long rides through New Hampshire, Maine and Cape Cod. They also enjoyed traveling to the Virgin Islands, Hawaii and their many trips to California to visit with Uncle George. Doris had an endearing personality that allowed her to meet new people and make friends wherever her travels took her.
Doris and Ernie also had their daily routine of heading to McDonald’s in Wilmington where they would have coffee with their friends, discuss current events or just talk about their families. The couple saved their Friday evenings for their favorite past time of dancing and boy could they dance. Doris and Ernie would head out with their family and friends to the St. Anthony Club or other dance clubs to hit the floor, show their moves and have a great time.
Doris had many talents; she was an excellent seamstress, knitter, quilter and crafter. Doris sewed for her family and friends, making beautiful dresses, clothes and drapes. Doris sewed Baptismal Bibs for the babies that were Christened at St. Anthony’s Parish in Woburn; mementos that were treasured by their families. Doris knitted blankets and quilts as special gifts for her family and friends; all made with love and will be treasured for a life time.
Doris was a woman of great faith and an active communicant of St. Anthony’s Parish in Woburn for many, many years. Doris was active in the Ladies Sodality, fundraising events and Church Bazaar’s throughout the years. She and Ernie loved their Parish and would do anything to help in any way.
Doris will be fondly remembered as “quite a lady”; kind, caring, friendly and helpful. Doris went out of her way to help anyone in need, never expecting anything in return. She had an endearing personality and made everyone around her feel loved. Doris had a great laugh, beautiful smile and a warm hug for all. She will truly be missed by all who knew and loved her.
Doris was the beloved wife of 72 years to the late Ernest “Sparrow” Balestrieri, devoted mother of Sandy A. (Balestrieri) LaFontaine & her late husband Eugene “Tiny” LaFontaine of Woburn, the late Deborah A. (Balestrieri) Sylvester and Tom Concannon and his wife Linette of Florida. Loving “Nana” of Paul LaFontaine and his wife Lenor, Donald LaFontaine and his wife Christine, Sharona Sylvester and her companion Garrett and her great-grandchildren Jaidyn, Kiley, Zach, Mason and Levi. Dear daughter of the late Clayton Walsh and Alice (Doucette) and Clayton Seymour, sister of the late Robert Walsh and his late wife Ruth. Doris is also survived by her brothers and sisters-in-law as well as her many nieces, nephews and their families.
In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation in Doris’ memory to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105-9959.
Due to the current situation with covid 19 and concern for everyone’s safety, the family of Doris Balestrieri has decided to postpone services at this time and will look forward to celebrating her life with all of you at a later date.
Arrangements are under the direction of the Nichols Funeral Home, Wilmington.
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