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“I worked with Joe, driving in the van for a couple of years. During that time, we became friends. I always looked forward to seeing him very day. He...Read More »
1 of 3 | Posted by: Melissa Murray - Cambridge, MA

“Many fond memories of outings with Mr. O'Connell. (my first visit to Haymarket Square) He also cut my hair occasionally. It was a 'pixie' cut and I...Read More »
2 of 3 | Posted by: Pat Daly - Woburn, MA - Neighbor

“Grampy was very much loved by our family. I went to MacArthur where he was a janitor and he used to sneak us candy when we walked by him. Never...Read More »
3 of 3 | Posted by: Tracy Lindo - Friendswood, TX


Waltham – Mr. Joseph P. O'Connell, of Waltham, died Monday, May 2, 2022 at Lahey Clinic in Burlington following a sudden illness. He was 96.

Joe was born in Waltham on June 11, 1925, a son of Irish immigrants Patrick and Margaret (Walsh) O'Connell. He joined the United States Navy right out of high school and served aboard a destroyer during World War II. His ship was part of the convoy that covered the Allied landings at Normandy beaches on June 6, 1944.

He was called back to service in the Navy during the Korean War and after his discharge he went to barber school and became a well-known barber in Waltham. He owned Twinbrook Barber Shop on Prospect Hill Road and after that worked for years at Center Barber Shop on Lexington Street.

For years Joe worked as a custodian for the Waltham Public Schools, first at the MacArthur School and after that took over the head position at Kennedy Middle School.

Never one to sit idly, Joe worked as a van driver for special needs students for JSC Transportation, retiring just three years ago.

Joe was a longtime member of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks, Lodge No. 953, in Waltham and bowled for years at the Wal-Lex Bowling League. Around the house he enjoyed keeping a beautiful garden and caring for his beloved pup, MissE.

He leaves his children, Colleen J. O'Connell (Cheryl Armstrong) of Waltham, Karen J. Jurovcik of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and Michaela P. Deeb (Robert) of Brockton; nine grandchildren, ten great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Joe was also the father of the late Sheila A. Taves; brother of the late Patrick J., Jr., William and Thomas O'Connell and was the longtime partner of Angela Higgins.

Family and friends will honor and remember Joe's life by gathering to visit in The Joyce Funeral Home, 245 Main Street (Rte. 20), Waltham on Monday, May 9th from 10 a.m. to 12 noon. Graveside services will follow in Mount Feake Cemetery, Waltham.