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Eugene I. "Gene" Prior
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Gately Funeral Home

79 West Foster Street
Melrose, MA 02176
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Memories & Candles

“We were saddened to hear of Gene's passing but delighted to frequently see him back at Mass at St. Marys recently. We were involved in many programs...Read More »
1 of 14 | Posted by: Jim and Sheila McArdle - Melrose, MA

“Our prayers and heartfelt sympathy is with the Prior family during this time of their loss. My wife (Terry) and I are both friends of Eugene's...Read More »
2 of 14 | Posted by: Dr. Johnny Porter - Metairie, LA

“Our thoughts and prayers go out to each of the Prior family. Gene was a gentleman in the true sense of the word. My life was richer because Gene...Read More »
3 of 14 | Posted by: Maureen Vasily - Naples, FL

“Mr. Prior was such a gentleman and so very faith filled. I enjoyed studying with Gene at one of the group bible studies at St. Mary's. His love...Read More »
4 of 14 | Posted by: Patti Peterson - Melrose, MA

“My thoughts and prayers go out to Gene's family over their loss. I got to know Gene when he moved to Reading. He was a regular at weekend Mass at St....Read More »
5 of 14 | Posted by: Fr. Steve Rock - Reading, MA

“So nice to have worked with Gene at McCall. He was always smilingand upbeat about the students. Fun to talk to and work with eachday. We could all...Read More »
6 of 14 | Posted by: Claudia McCarthy - Winchester, MA

“What a legend of a man! He had a heart as big as all of Ireland! I will miss his wisdom and compassion. Most of all, I will miss having a waltz...Read More »
7 of 14 | Posted by: Susie Daly - Melrose, MA

“What a blessing it has been for me to know Gene these past few years while at the Residence at Melrose Station. I will miss his songs, laughter and...Read More »
8 of 14 | Posted by: Michelle Meehan - Melrose, MA

“My Condolences to the family, especially to Tom Prior who played basketball with and took me to many Celtics games. From Stephen Williams (Willie) ”
9 of 14 | Posted by: Stephen Williams

“I wish to offer the Prior Family my sincere sympathy. Paul and I knew your parents .they were lovely people. I am so sorry for your loss. ...Read More »
10 of 14 | Posted by: Sheila Tighe - Melrose, MA

“Gene was a great man and a great neighbor. So sorry to hear of his passing. ”
11 of 14 | Posted by: Linda Burns - Reading, MA

“Gene and I met at the residence at Melrose Station. I worked as a receptionist. Gene was a wonderful man. He came over every time I was working,...Read More »
12 of 14 | Posted by: Vanessa Romeike-Kurz - Germany

“I'm so sorry to hear about your Dad's passing. He was such a nice man. I'm sure he's doing a jig in heaven with your beautiful Mom. You'll all be in...Read More »
13 of 14 | Posted by: Diane Turner - Melrose, MA

“The Gately Family and Staff wish to express our sincere sympathy to you. It is our hope that we may be able to make a difficult time more bearable....Read More »
14 of 14 | Posted by: John W Gately, John H. Gately & Fred Sprague - MA


Eugene I. "Gene" Prior, of Melrose, died surrounded by family, at the Sawtelle Hospice House in Reading on January 28, 2020. He was 89 years of age. Gene was born in South Boston and raised in Somerville, a graduate of Malden Catholic High School Class of 1947. He went to work out of high school and then served in the Army in the early 1950s before attending college. He earned his Bachelors and Masters Degrees from Boston College in 1959/1960. Gene began his career in education as a French teacher at Stoughton High School, he moved to the Winchester public schools in 1968 and worked as a Guidance Counselor, first at Winchester High School, then Lynch Junior High School and McCall Middle School before his retirement in 1994.

He was a former member of Massachusetts School Counselors Association, St. Mary's Parish Council, and former member and President of the North Shore Irish Association. Gene resided in Melrose for 45 years, then after selling the family home, lived in Reading for 7 years and finally returned to Melrose in 2018 where he lived at Melrose Station. Gene was happy to reconnect with old friends, return to his home parish and share a song or lead a sing-a-long with his new neighbors. His final days were filled with family, Irish music, jokes, laughter and compassionate care.

Beloved husband of the late Margaret E. "Marge" (McCarthy) Prior. Caring son of the late Thomas & Alice (Heaney) Prior. Loving father of Thomas J. Prior & his wife Barbara and their daughter Sarena of Orlando, FL, Jean M. Woodman & her husband George of Billerica, Barry M. Prior of Hattiesburg, Mississippi and Michelle I. Prior & her husband Greg Kurr of Winchester. Cherished grandfather of Kelly, Ryan, Sean, T.J., Matthew, Erin, Ellen, Katie & Colin. ... READ MORE →