Newburyport — Henry R. Comeau of Newburyport, Mass., passed away on Wednesday, September 18, 2013, peacefully at home with his family all around him. Henry, also known as Richie and Dick, was born in Ipswich, Mass., to the late Henry Earl and Rosilda (Gallant) Comeau on July 11, 1923. Henry attended Ipswich High School until his country called him for duty at the age of 17 and he served proudly in the United States Navy under the infamous Admiral Arleigh Burke aboard the USS Thatcher DD-514 as a small boat coxswain earning the rank of Seaman 1st class where he participated in every major battle in the Pacific Ocean. Upon returning from the war, Henry worked as a machinist. He was however, most accomplished as a devoted husband, loving father and grandfather. Henry was a most successful gardener, with the best blueberry bushes in Newburyport. He was also an award winning wood carver specializing in birds and ducks. His hand-carved model ship of the Fletcher Class Destroyer was recently on display in the Maritime Museum in Newburyport.
Henry would be celebrating his 50th wedding anniversary to his wife, Sheila (Trudel), in December. Right to the end his eyes would be at their brightest when his family was in the room. His greatest moments were celebrating his children’s accomplishments no matter how big or small. He enjoyed mostly his times camping with all his grandchildren, his crazy hand slapping games of slap jack with them and had the remarkable ability to hold all their attention with his stories. He left this world being an incredible inspiration and role model to them all. Two of his grandchildren proudly and respectfully followed him in service by joining the United States Navy.
Henry is survived by his wife, Sheila (Trudel) Comeau of Newburyport; sons, John Comeau and wife, Vicki, of Port Charlotte, Fla.; Tom Comeau and wife, Cheryl, of Amesbury; Frank Comeau and wife, Johanna, of Epping, N.H.; James Comeauand and wife, Deborah, of Newburyport; Jeff Comeau and wife, Jessica, of Newton, N.H.; daughters, Trudy Newcomb and husband, Paul, of Carver, Mass.; Joanne Ballard and Stephen Morrissey of Hampton, N.H.; Ellen Rexford and husband, Greg, of Hampton Falls, N.H.; 27 grandchildren; 26 great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his brother, Mark Comeau and sisters, Thelma Macone and Rosalyn Amerio. Henry was predeceased by his son, Richard O. Comeau; his brother, John E. Comeau; sister, Dorothy DiLorenzo.