AMerican Veteran 13
Official Obituary of

Joseph Gomes

October 11, 1928 ~ September 11, 2023 (age 94) 94 Years Old

Joseph Gomes Obituary

Joseph D Gomes, age 94, a dedicated husband, father, educator, and pilot, entered eternal life on Monday, September 11, 2023.  He died peacefully in his home surrounded by his loving family.

Joe was born on October 11, 1928, in Pawtucket, Rhode Island, to the late Gabriella and Manuel Gomes. He had one brother, Mario Gomes, and seven sisters: Fernanda DeAndrade (Dan), Marie Baldasari (Nilo), Pat Sylvestre (Leo), Rose Calhoun (Joe), Alice Fournier (Leo), Dorothy Talik (Joe), and Carol Perry (John).  

Joe joined the Navy when he was 17, serving for two years aboard the USS Portsmouth as a radar operator. His ship was commissioned after WWII and embarked on a Goodwill Tour to several countries in the Mediterranean, the Adriatic, and along the coastal African areas.

While in the Navy, Joe and Martha DuPonte were married at St. Leo’s Church in Pawtucket, RI on November 15, 1947.  They were high school sweethearts and their marriage flourished for a remarkable 75 happy years.

Following Joe’s discharge from the Navy, he graduated from Providence College in 1953 with a degree in Education. He was a lifelong teacher at Middletown High School and participated in the planning of the curriculum for this first high school in Middletown’s history. Joe taught English and Spanish. He also served as a faculty advisor for Tempo, Middletown High School’s literary magazine.  He concluded his career in the vocational program teaching Carpentry. In addition, Joe taught at the Newport War College working with foreign officers improving their proficiency in English speaking skills.

As a loving father, Joe often included his children whenever helping relatives and friends with building projects, passing on to his children his invaluable knowledge.

Joe’s life was guided by his dedication to God which was expressed through his service to his community.  In 1963, St. Mary’s Vincent DePaul Society sponsored a family from Cuba during the Cuban crisis. Joe and Martha were deeply involved in this family’s successful resettlement, which included the parents and three children.  Joe and Martha served as Godparents for the Baptism ceremony of the family’s youngest child. Joe’s proficiency in Spanish allowed him to serve as interpreter for much of the family needs. It was a rewarding challenge for all involved.

For over 70 years, Joe was an active member of St. Mary’s Church where he attended daily Mass. He served as a Eucharistic Minister and was a member of the Nocturnal Adoration Society.  He also initiated the recitation of the Rosary after Mass with a dedicated group of attendees. This devotion continued for 33 years.

Joe was an avid sailor and shared this pastime with his family and friends. For a few summer months, he was a sailing instructor with the YMCA. His many young students were thrilled to sail the two Pearson sloops in the program. In addition, Joe was a Boy Scout Leader for Troop 6, St. Mary’s Parish. The experience of traveling in canoes on the Wood River with the troop was a treasured memory for all.

One of Joe’s greatest passions was aviation.  He earned his Pilot’s license in the early ‘80s.  He and his wife Martha (a Pilot also) enjoyed extensive flying in New England, Florida, Nova Scotia, and a month-long cross-country trip to California. He inspired many others to pursue their pilot’s license, including his daughter Celia and grandson John.

Joe is survived by his wife Martha, his nine children: Larry Gomes (Kate), Rosemary Pelissier (Joe), Celia Gomes (Gerry Payette), David Gomes, Stephen Gomes, Andrew Gomes (Heather), Robert Gomes (Tee), Matthew Gomes, Anita Marshall, and by his sister Dorothy Talik (Joe). Joe also is survived by his ten grandchildren, six great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

The wake will be held Friday, September 15, 2023, 9:00 am at the George C. Lima Funeral Home, 367 High Street, Bristol, RI.  Family and friends are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial at 11:00 am, following the wake, at St. Mary’s Church, 330 Wood Street, Bristol, RI. Mass will be live streamed on St. Mary's Church, Bristol, RI Facebook page. A Christian Burial with Military Honors will follow the Mass at St. Mary’s Cemetery, Chestnut Street, Bristol, RI.

George C. Lima funeral home provides arrangements. For online condolences and tributes, please visit

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Calling Hours
September 15, 2023

9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
George C. Lima Funeral Home
367 High Street
Bristol, RI 02809

Mass of Christian Burial
September 15, 2023

11:00 AM
St. Mary's Church
330 Wood Street
Bristol, RI 02809

September 15, 2023

12:00 PM
St. Mary's Cemetery
Chestnut Street
Bristol, RI 02809


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