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Two Lifelong Volunteers Honored as the 2016 Milford Seniors of the Year

Shown left to right, are Seniors of the Year for Milford, Joe Donaher and Jean Dudley, who are seated, with Sue Clark, Senior Center Director, and Edwin Roth, Chairman Milford Council on Aging, both standing. Harry Platcow photo

Town officials, members of the Milford Council on Aging and everyone at the Ruth Anne Bleakney Senior Center thanked and recognized the efforts of two residents as Milford Senior Citizens of the Year for 2016 – Jean Dudley and Joseph Donaher.

Both have volunteered at the center for a decade or more. Dudley is the center's volunteer coordinator, runs the reception area and heads up the Fuel Assistance Program. Donaher uses his green thumb to care for the center's plants and grounds.

Dudley was born in Worcester, moved to Milford and finally settled in Mendon. She graduated in 1957 from Mendon High School and graduated from Becker College, Worcester in 1958, while working in the Milford Shoe company office, to pay for tuition. Following college in 1958, Dudley worked at Bright Insurance Agency in Milford until her retirement in 2004. She did some consulting work before fully retiring and volunteering at the Center.

In 1967, Dudley married and had one child, Lisa. She and her family lived in Mendon until 1977. They moved to Milford and later Hopedale where she currently resides. She also has a sister, Anne, a brother, John, and two nephews.

A true volunteer, Dudley donated time to her parish, Sacred Heart of Jesus in Hopedale, where she is a Eucharistic Minister, teaches classes and brings Communion to hospital patients. She is also an avid Patriots fan.

Donaher was born in Beachmont, which is near Revere Beach. He attended the public school system, graduated from Immaculate Conception High School in Revere in 1957 and attended the Wards School of Accounting.

He and his wife, Fran, met while working together at Lumbermans Insurance Company, Boston. They married in 1960, when the groom was 20 and the bride just 18, so his dad had to give permission for the marriage. The couple lived in Medford and Brockton before moving to Milford in 1967. They raised six children: Joseph Jr., Theresa, Edward, Karen, Mark and Julie; and are blessed with 15 grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

Another lifelong volunteer, Donaher has donated his time as a Farm League Baseball Coach, Committee Chairman of the Cub Scouts, CCD teacher, and as a St. Mary's Parish fair volunteer. A sports fan he enjoys watching football and baseball. He also likes playing cribbage, bowling and going on cruises.

Both were honored at the Senior Center Volunteer luncheon and ceremonies on April 22.


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