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Obituary: Army Surgical Technician, Business Owner, John 'Jack' Gulde, 88

John Gulde  - Courtesy Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home
John Gulde - Courtesy Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home
The following is an obituary from the Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home

John “Jack” Gulde, founder and former owner of Gulde Insurance Agency, passed away after a short illness at the Sawtelle Hospice House in Reading. He had celebrated his 88th birthday in December. 

Jack was born in Roslindale, the son of the late John and Bertha Gulde. In 1929, at the age of 4, his parents moved to Burlington, a small farming community with only several thousand residents. Jack’s nineteen forty-three high school graduating class was less than 20 students. He enlisted in the Army during World War II. He was trained to be a Surgical Technician assigned to the Winter General Army Hospital in Topeka, Kansas. He was Second in Charge at a Prisoner of War Camp in Aiken South Carolina, which housed 600 German POWs, with whom he treated with respect and kindness. He enjoyed playing baseball in the service with other young men from all over the country.

Benevolence, compassion, concern, empathy, and humility were the traits and qualities that echoed throughout Jack’s life as a family man, business owner and active community member. He had a strong Catholic faith. Jack was an extremely energetic and motivated individual. While balancing a full-time job and a family, he managed to attend night school at Boston University and earn a degree in Business Administration. He worked for 17 years at Atlantic Gelatin in Woburn as the Accounting Supervisor. He left there in the 1960”s to start and run his successful business, The Gulde Insurance Agency. His business and client list grew quickly. For Jack, his clients were like family and he did whatever he could to help and counsel them. He did little things like deliver license plates to your home and then install them on your car. He was always available day or night to help a customer. Like everything Jack did, he always gave a 110 percent.

Jack was of those special people who made Burlington a wonderful place to live and raise a family. Jack’s influence was felt all over Burlington and touched all ages. He was a member of the Rotary Club, American Legion, and Burlington Business Round Table. He was a longtime coach and sponsor of Burlington Baseball and Softball Association and was the Master of Ceremonies at the annual baseball banquets. He was an active member of the Knights of Columbus. He participated in the K of C’s minstrel shows, charity events, socials, served as the chairman of the Building Committee and was one of the members who took the risk of co-signing the mortgage to build the Knights of Columbus Council Hall. He served as a Chairman of the Burlington Council on Aging Board of Directors and often wrote columns reminiscing about the early days of Burlington. He served on the Planning Board during the 1950’s just as development in Burlington started to explode. He even served as interim Town Accountant.He served on the Board of the Burlington Bank and Trust and was a benefactor for the Lahey Clinic Medical Center. In 1977 he was awarded the Carl Cyr Award from the BBRT for “Outstanding Service to Burlington.” Jack was a quiet leader and he truly made Burlington a better place to live 

Jack was also a man of faith and family. He had a steadfast Catholic faith. He was there during the early days of St. Margaret’s Church, fundraising to build the current church, serving as an usher at mass, and being a loyal and faithful parishioner. At home, Jack had high standards and expectations for his children. He had kind and caring advice, gave them the skills and education to succeed, and loved them unconditionally. He was a devoted husband to his wife Kay for 64 years. Jack cherished her support in all that he did and the retirement years they shared on the east coast of Florida and on Cape Cod. Jack was the proud Papa to his 11 grandchildren and 1 great- grandchild. 

Jack was the devoted husband of Kathleen A. “Kay” (Devaney). He was the loving father of John “Jack” Gulde, Jr. & his wife Kathleen of Chelmsford, Cheryl Hansen & her husband Robert of Mashpee, Carol Cammon & her husband Fred of Winchester, Mary Biagiotti & her husband Richard of Burlington, and the late Kathleen E. Gulde-Cook and her husband Roger of Burlington. Jack was the proud grandfather of Katie Rooney , Caroline Gulde, Adam & Vanessa Hansen, Jason & Molly Cook, Carly & Michael Cammon, and Richard, Kimberly & Kerri Biagiotti. Great Grandfather of Wylie Rooney. 

Funeral from the Edward V. Sullivan Funeral Home, 43 Winn St., BURLINGTON (Exit 34 off Rt. 128, Woburn side) on Monday, Jan. 20 at 9 a.m. Followed by a Mass of Christian Burial at St. Margaret’s Church, 111 Winn St., Burlington at 10 a.m. Visiting hours Sunday 1-4 p.m. Interment in Chestnut Hill Cemetery, Burlington. Memorials in Jack’s name may be made to VNA of Middlesex East & Visiting Nurse Hospice, 607 North Ave., Suite 17, Wakefield, MA 01880.

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