Mass of Christian Burial
Obituary of Roger Emmett Gavagan
Roger E. Gavagan, of Danbury, cherished husband of the late Barbara Jean (Webb) Gavagan, died peacefully in his sleep at the home of his daughter in Brookfield. He was born in Boston, MA on June 12, 1932, son of the late Vincent J, Sr. and Alice (Cornell) Gavagan. He was a graduate of Arnold College where he played football and The McAllister Institute of Mortuary Science.
He was a longtime parishioner of St. Gregory the Great Church where he was active in many capacities, notably as a Eucharistic Minister, Chairman of the Advisory Board, Lector, Trustee, and was a Knight of Columbus. He was honored as a recipient of the St. Augustine Medal and the Knight of St. Gregory Medal. He was a member of The Exchange Club, Catholic War Veterans, and volunteered as a coach for Brookfield Pop Warner Football. He sat on many boards, including Ann’s Place and others too numerous to mention. Roger also drove patients to treatment as a volunteer with the American Cancer Society.
Roger was a Veteran of the Korean War, proudly serving with the United States Army as a physical therapy assistant at Walter Reed Medical Center.
Roger, along with his close friend, B. Robert Garavel, owned and operated the Cornell Memorial and Brookfield Funeral Homes for many years, carrying on the family tradition of service that began with his grandparents, Joseph and Ona. At the time of his licensure he was the youngest licensed funeral director in the State of Connecticut. The compassion he provided to countless grieving families is immeasurable.
A gentleman in every sense of the word, Roger was well known for his beautiful blue eyes, great sense of humor, and ability to put others at ease. He was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather. His greatest love was for his wife and his family. Some of their happiest times were spent vacationing in Cape Cod, and Rhode Island.
Roger’s favorite pastime was spending time with his grandchildren, especially baking pies and Christmas cookies. He never missed a dance recital, football or softball game or event for his grandkids. Roger, with his sister, Ona-May, was an accomplished tap dancer, appearing on the Ted Mackey Show. He loved the New York Giants, and his two French bulldogs, Enya and Pip. He cherished his Irish heritage and enjoyed St. Patrick’s Day traditions with his family. He adored “his girls” and supported them in every way. He loved his sons-in-law as his sons, treating them with kindness and respect.
Roger and Barbara created a home full of love, laughter and tradition. The ability to laugh in even the most trying times is the greatest gift he gave his children and grandchildren. He was a blessing to all who knew him.
He will be sadly missed by his four daughters, Bonnie A. Cypher, Kathleen A. Weinzierl and her husband, Jeff, Elizabeth M. Burandt and her husband, Horst, Patricia W. Tharas and her husband, Mike, with whom he made his home; his grandchildren, Seamus and Sean Cypher, Justin Weinzierl, Chad Weinzierl and his wife, Katie, Jordan and Elise Burandt, Sophia and Cloe Tharas; and his sister, Ona-May Hancock. He is also survived by his brothers-in-law, Herbert A. Webb and his wife, Lisa, and Rodney L. Bourdeau; his sister-in-law Eleanor Gavagan; many nieces and nephews; and many special lifelong friends.
In addition to his wife, Barbara, he was predeceased by his beloved daughter, Barbara Jean; his brother, Vincent J. Gavagan, Jr., and his sister, Marilyn Miller.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated on Saturday, March 9th at 10:00am at St. Gregory the Great Church, 85 Great Plain Road, Danbury, with burial to follow in St. Peter Cemetery.
The family will receive friends at the Cornell Memorial Home, 247 White Street, Danbury, on Friday between the hours of 4:00-8:00pm.
Memorial Contributions may be made to St. Gregory the Great Church or to St. Joseph Indian School, PO Box 326 Chamberlain SD 57326.
Who We Are
In the ninety-plus years since the Cornell's founded the firm, many aspects of the profession have changed, but it still remains a family owned and operated firm with its basic mission "To serve as we would be served."
Cornell Memorial Home
247 White Street
Danbury, CT 06810
Phone: (203) 748-4833
Brookfield Funeral Home
786 Federal Road
Brookfield, CT 06804
Phone: (203) 748-4833