Cover photo for James Richard Rourke's Obituary
James Richard Rourke Profile Photo
1949 James 2023

James Richard Rourke

May 7, 1949 — April 6, 2023

Orange

James Richard Rourke, 73, entered into eternal rest Thursday, April 6.

Jim, beloved husband of Sharlene (Kilmer) (Gugarty) Rourke, was born in Chelsea, Massachusetts, son of Deputy Fire Chief James R. Rourke Sr., and Alyce (Thomas) Rourke, affectionately known to all as “Auntie Dolly”.

In his youth, Jim was active in the martial arts, teaching classes and participating in exhibitions, where he was known to break a slab of concrete or a board or two with his bare knuckles on command. He even once tangled with Chuck Norris!

Jim graduated from Chelsea High school and went on to study at Harvard University, focusing on East Asian Studies, and leaving only when his father fell ill. Through myriad of work experiences, most notably at the former Kaye Electronics, Jim became a man of many skills and a perpetual student of technology.

Jim thoroughly enjoyed watching his son, another Jim, play soccer throughout his high school career, and beamed with pride when Jim married Jessica Parks. His smile grew only wider when Jim and Jessica presented him with his treasured grandchildren, Vivienne James and Thomas Easton., of whom he was extremely proud.

Jim’s parents predeceased him, as did his sister Joan Hynes and Ashli Garton, the daughter of a friend whom he raised as his own. He is survived by his wife of Orange; his son, daughter-in-law, and grandchildren all of Columbia, South Carolina; and his step-children John Gugarty of West Springfield, Margaret Gugarty and her partner Matt Hotaling of Watertown, and Shannon Gugarty of Orange. He is also survived by his former wife Alice (Sinitski) Rourke of Wilmington, MA, many nieces and nephews throughout the country, along with his cherished Jindo dog, Yuki-ko.

A Funeral service will be held on Thursday, April 13, 2023 at 7:00 p.m., at Fiske Murphy & Mack Funeral Home, 110 New Athol Road, Orange, MA 01364.

Calling hours will be held at Fiske-Murphy & Mack Funeral Home from 4:00 – 7:00 p.m., prior to the funeral.

A private burial will be at the convenience of the family.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Dakin Humane Society 171 Union Street, Springfield, MA  www.dakinhumane.org

To leave an online condolence, please visit, www.mackfamilyfh.com

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

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

Service Schedule

Past Services

Visitation

Thursday, April 13, 2023

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

Mack Family Funeral Homes - Fiske Murphy & Mack Chapel

110 New Athol Rd, Orange, MA 01364

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

Funeral Service

Thursday, April 13, 2023

7:00 - 8:00 pm (Eastern time)

Mack Family Funeral Homes - Fiske Murphy & Mack Chapel

110 New Athol Rd, Orange, MA 01364

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

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