Cover photo for James A. Lake's Obituary
James A. Lake Profile Photo
1945 James 2024

James A. Lake

April 22, 1945 — June 12, 2024



ATHOL, MA – Colonel, retired, James Arthur Lake, 79, of Athol, was promoted to glory Wednesday, June 12, 2024, at home surrounded by family.

He was born in Gardner on April 22, 1945, the son of the late George Vincent Lake and the late Phyllis Mae (Winter) Lake.

Born and raised in Athol, he is a 1963 graduate of Athol High School and a 1967 graduate of Boston University, where he was awarded a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Relations Business and Industry. While attending the university, Colonel Lake was a distinguished military graduate in the Army ROTC program and was commissioned a second lieutenant in the Signal Corps in May 1967. He served for 26 years in the United States Army retiring in 1993.

He was a highly decorated veteran of the Vietnam War. He also received his Master’s degree in Business Administration from NY Institute of Technology.

He returned to Athol where he lived out the rest of his life. Colonel Lake had a deep love for his Savior Jesus Christ and involved himself deeply in the local church family of the Athol-Orange Baptist Church. During different phases of church life, he was an Elder, Deacon and Chairman of the Missions Committee, and Director of the Living Last Supper presentation. He was passionate about sharing the saving knowledge of the Lord Jesus Christ which presented itself in joining The Gideons International. As a Gideon, he traveled worldwide on behalf of the Gideons sharing God’s Word and served on the International Cabinet for six years. He was active in his local Franklin County Gideon Camp proclaiming the Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Involving himself in community activities, he was Chairman of the Advisory Board of the Salvation Army, Chairman of North Quabbin Citizens Advocacy, and a Director of the previous Athol-Clinton Co-operative Bank and current bank Hometown. He enjoyed leading Bible studies, the singing of hymns, playing his autoharp, encouraging others, organizing events, fishing, camping in the White Mountains, and tending his multiple raspberry patches.

He leaves his wife and high school sweetheart of 57 years, Nancy (Williams) Lake; one son, Peter W. Lake and his wife Melanie of Melissa, TX; one daughter, Karen K. Fake and her husband Mark of Mechanicsburg, PA; seven grandchildren, James Lake, Charlece Ramsey and her husband Wesley, Samuel Lake, Amber Troutman and her husband Zach, Kyle Fake and his partner Jason Nichols, Wyatt Fake, and Kenna Fake; and one great grandchild, Robert Cash Ramsey. He leaves behind his brother, Roy V. Lake; nephews Christopher Lake and his wife Tammy, John Williams, James Williams, and his wife Aimee; nieces Lynn Williams and Carin (Lake) Stock and her husband Doug; and many extended family and friends.

A Celebration of Life will be held Saturday, June 22, 2024, at 11:00 AM in the Athol-Orange Baptist Church, 131 Ridge Avenue, Athol. The burial will be at a later date at Arlington National Cemetery.

Calling hours will be held Friday, June 21, 2024 from 5-8 PM at Fiske-Murphy & Mack Funeral Home, 110 New Athol Rd., Orange, MA. Please feel free to wear patriotic colors (red, white, and blue) to both events.

In lieu of flowers the family asks that memorial donations be made in his memory to Athol-Orange Baptist Church, 131 Ridge Ave, Athol, MA 01331 or The Gideons International, P.O. Box 973, Greenfield, MA 01302.

Kevin J. Mack, Walter C. Taylor, and Melissa A. McQuaid, Funeral Directors.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of James A. Lake, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Friday, June 21, 2024

5:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Mack Family Funeral Homes - Fiske Murphy & Mack Chapel

110 New Athol Rd, Orange, MA 01364

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Funeral Service

Saturday, June 22, 2024

11:00am - 12:00 pm (Eastern time)

Athol Orange Baptist Church

131 Ridge Ave, Athol, MA 01331

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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