Arthur F. Cronin, Jr. beloved husband of Dorothea M. (Claffey) Cronin, for almost 64 years, died peacefully at home with his wife and children by his side. Arthur was the son of the late Arthur (Frank) and Mary C. Cronin of Salem. A Salem native, he was an altar boy at St. James Church, caddied at Kernwood Country Club and ushered at the old Paramount Theatre in Salem. He was a graduate of St. Mary’s High School in Lynn. Arthur served his country with the U.S. Navy in World War II. After returning from the war he attended business school for accounting and went on to earn a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemistry from Northeastern University which resulted in a forty year career as a chemist. He enlisted in the Navy just after Pearl Harbor and experienced combat in the South Pacific, as an aviation radioman gunner in the back of an open cockpit dive bomber. His squadron (VB305) was assigned to the island of Bouganville, and the aircraft carrier USS Hornet. His cockpit was perforated by flak on his 22nd birthday but he was miraculously unscathed. At the end of the war, the units records were misplaced so fifty years after his honorable discharge, he was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross and seven Air Medals for his 37 missions. This was presented in person at the Cronin home by his squadron Commander John Iarrabino who had one on to become the Captain of the Aircraft Carrier Oriskiny. Arthur was a communicant and active member of St. John the Evangelist Church in Beverly. He and Dorothea were one of the original couples who helped to build the church. They also helped to start and at one point were the presidents of the Couples Club. They were recently honored by St. John’s at the annual Gala held at Danversport Yacht Club. He was a Lecotr, usher, Eucharistic Minister, a member of the Knights of Columbus, the Veterans Spear post and Vittori Rocci Post. Arthur was an avid golfer and officer in the men’s league at Beverly Golf and Tennis. He loved to trout fish and especially enjoyed traveling with “his lovely bride” throughout the United States and Europe and on many cruises. A true gentleman who loved his wife and family he will be sorely missed and will never be forgotten. He quietly dealt with several medical issues over the past years, but God and the wonderful doctors at Beverly Hospital kept him with us. Our faith, gives us the quiet consolation that he is in a better place and that someday we will be together again.
In addition to his wife he is survived by his son, Mark F. Cronin of Southington, CT; a daughter, Susan E. Palmieri and her husband Michael; a grandson, Michael Christopher, all of Peabody; his nieces, Carolann Hartnett, Patricia Anderson, Cathy Cronin, Jackie Covino and nephew John Cronin; his aunt, Rita Cronin and a number of cousins.
A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at St. John the Evangelist Church, New Balch Street, Beverly on Saturday at 9:00 A.M. Relatives and friends are invited to attend. Visiting hours are Friday from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Campbell – Lee, Moody, Russell Funeral Home, 525 Cabot Street, Beverly (North Beverly location). Burial will be in St. Mary’s Cemetery, Beverly. In lieu of flowers, a donation may be made to any of the following charities in his name: The Beverly Veterans Council, 502 Cabot Street, Beverly, MA 01915; The Carmelite Discalced Nuns, 15 Mount Carmel Road, Danvers, MA 01923; Allcare VNA, 210 Market Street, Lynn, MA 01901 or Hospice of the North Shore, 75 Sylvan Street, Danvers, MA 01923.
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