Shrewsbury – James D. “Jim” Shaw, 78, of Shrewsbury, passed away peacefully on Sunday, September 24, 2023, surrounded by his loving family. Beloved husband of Elaine E. (Carlson) Shaw.
Born in Keene, NH, Jim grew up in the Kilby Street and Main South area of Worcester. He was the oldest of seven children. He and his brother and sisters always had many stories to share of their childhood escapades.
He was a graduate of South High school, Worcester Junior College, Southern Illinois University, and Worcester State College. While in High School, he played for the Wesley Methodist Church basketball league, and continued to play for much of his life.
He began his teaching career in Auburn at Mary D. Stone School, where he met his wife of 55 years, Elaine (Carlson) Shaw. From there, he enlisted in the Army, serving as an Intelligence Officer. He was in Baltimore, Maryland and Eugene, Oregon before being deployed to serve honorably in Vietnam. After returning home to Massachusetts following his tour of duty, he taught at North Grafton Elementary school, teaching fifth grade math and social studies. He moved on from teaching to managerial positions at Data General, A.T. Cross, and New England Telephone Company. In retirement, he was a manager at StorGard in Northboro for several years.
Jim loved being the family “Clark Griswold” and took delight in planning summer vacations and other travel adventures over the years, both abroad and local. After his two grandchildren were born, one of his favorite vacation places was Topsail Island, NC, and many happy summers were spent on the beach there. Bringing the grandchildren home for a yearly Massachusetts vacation offered yet more opportunities to plan outings all over New England, including Ogunquit, ME, which was a family favorite.
He always enjoyed horse racing, and loved taking the annual trip to “The Spa” in Saratoga Springs, NY. During the year, he always made a point of watching the Kentucky Derby and Breeder’s Cup, and sometimes he even picked the right horses! He was a lifelong Yankees fan. As a kid, he used to go to the movies a lot and sit through many a showing of classic films, and enjoyed the Turner Classic Movie channel. He had a vast store of movie trivia, particularly of westerns and action adventures. He could remember actors and the films they starred in like nobody else.
In 2013, he suffered a sudden cardiac arrest, which sidelined him for the better part of a year, but with extensive rehab and family support, he managed to return to reasonably good health and enjoyed his favorite pastimes once again. He was always up for a restaurant outing. Jim’s dog, Boss, came into his life around this time and was a major factor in his rehabilitation. He and his dog were a bonded pair, heading out every day for their long walk looking for snakes and ducks at the dog park.
Jim and the family were able to visit his daughter Valerie in Cary, NC this past July and he had a wonderful time touring his granddaughter Sylvie’s Elon University campus and hearing about all the amazing things she was doing there. He was excited to know that his grandson Gavin was getting his license and would soon be transporting us around. He was also proud of Gavin’s appointment as Captain of his JV soccer team. He would always talk about the kids to anyone who would listen.
He leaves behind his wife, Elaine (Carlson) Shaw; two daughters, Jennifer Shaw of Shrewsbury, MA and Valerie Cullen (Garrett) of Cary, NC; a granddaughter, Sylvie Cullen and grandson Gavin Cullen, both of Cary, NC. He also leaves his brother, Timothy Shaw, and sisters Victoria Morrow (Cliff); Susan Earielo, Rosemary DeCourcy; and Mary Legere, as well as many nephews and nieces. He was predeceased by sister Sandra Earielo.
Relatives and friends are cordially invited to attend visiting hours at the Chiampa Funeral Home, 5 Church Road, On the Common, Shrewsbury on Monday, October 2, 2023, from 4:00 – 7:00 PM. Funeral services will be held on Tuesday, October 3, 2023 at 11:00 AM in The First Congregational Church of Shrewsbury. Interment with Military Honors will follow at Mountain View Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, gifts in memory of Jim Shaw may be made to the First Congregational Church of Shrewsbury Remembrance fund or to UMass Memorial Health Care (UMMHC) Heart and Vascular Center. Gifts can be made online at donate.umassmemorial.org or mailed to: Office of Philanthropy, UMass Memorial Health Care, 365 Plantation Street, Biotech One, Worcester, MA 01605. Please note the Heart and Vascular Center with Jim’s name.