It is with profound respect and a heavy heart that we commemorate the life of James A. (Jim) Hays. Born on January 11, 1936, in Springfield, Massachusetts, he peacefully passed away on October 3, 2023. A compassionate and loyal man, Jim was the epitome of a true gentleman, always ready with a supportive word or a witty comment to lighten your day.
A graduate of West Springfield High School, Jim attended American International College, majoring in accounting, and after serving in the Finance Corps for the U.S. Army at Fort Dix, New Jersey, went on to a successful career as a Certified Public Accountant. He received a Masters in Business Administration from Western New England College before working at several utility companies and finally settling in Lunenburg in 1972 when he worked at Fitchburg Gas & Electric. Jim then served as Treasurer/Controller at Gem Industries in Gardner before moving on to work at the Commonwealth of Massachusetts as the Director of Fuel Assistance Programs and Weatherization, retiring in 2002. Jim's unwavering dedication to his work was matched only by his devotion to his community and family. Not just an avid follower of Boston College sports, he also held several notable roles, including serving as the Lunenburg Republican Town Committee Chairman, President of the Lunenburg-Townsend Rotary Club, and the Treasurer of the Eagle House Supporters. He also coached baseball for several years in the Lunenburg Little League. A man of deep Christian faith, he attended and taught Sunday School at Pilgrim Covenant Church in Lunenburg. His faith was evident in all aspects of his life, particularly in his love for family and his passion for traveling, working on cars, and spending time with his loved ones.
Jim leaves behind a legacy of love and dedication. He is survived by the love of his life, his loving wife of 61 years, Elizabeth (Lisa) (Steinmez) Hays of Lunenburg. He is also survived by his devoted children: his son, Jay Hays and his wife Paula of Ashburnham, and his daughter Rebecca Ethier of Leominster. He is also survived by his cherished grandchildren Kim Hays, James Hays, Madeline Ethier, and Nicholas Ethier, and his great granddaughter, Isabella Hays as well as his sister Ruth Hays of Wilbraham and many nieces and nephews. Also special to Jim were Lisa and Mike Gurrie and their 2 children. He was preceded in death by his parents, James F. and Dorothy Hays, and his sister Dorothy (Betty) Page.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Jim's memory to the Eagle House Supporters, c/o Lunenburg Adult Activity Center, 25 Memorial Drive, Lunenburg, MA 01462.
Visitation will be held on Friday, October 13, 2023, from 4:00-7:00 pm at the Brandon Funeral Home at 305 Wanoosnoc Road, Fitchburg, Massachusetts, 01420. The funeral service will take place the following day, Saturday, October 14, 2023, at 10:00 am at the same location. The burial will follow at North Cemetery, 71 Holman Street, Lunenburg, Massachusetts, 01462.
We invite all those who knew and loved Jim to share their memories of him and upload photos to the memorial page in honor of his beautiful life. His memory will forever be etched in our hearts, and his legacy will continue to inspire us all.
Arrangements under the care of Brandon Funeral Home.
Kevin J. Mack, Walter C. Taylor, Melissa A. McQuaid, Funeral Directors.