An Obituary: Nancy Marie McCarthy

April 25, 2023

Nancy Marie McCarthy (Greenquist), 76, of Bedford passed away on Thursday, April 20, 2023.

Born on June 24, 1946, Nancy is the daughter of the late Kenneth and Hilda Greenquist of Racine, WI. She is survived by Charles, her husband of 48 years, along with her daughter Heather Jacobs and husband Ben, her sister Kate Greenquist as well as nieces Maura Higginson, Paula Hanlon and her husband Douglas and their daughter Amelia, and several cousins on both sides of her family.

Nancy Marie McCarthy

Nancy was a valedictorian graduate of Washington Park High School in Racine, WI and went on to earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Nancy knew she wanted to go to a coast, so east she came and spent her career as a Spanish and French in several school districts in Massachusetts, serving for the most years in Wakefield and Bedford.

Nancy loved to travel, probably inspired by her family’s around-the-world trip in her early teen years. As an undergraduate in education, she also lived in France as part of her junior-rear-abroad program at UW-Madison.

She rarely passed up an opportunity to travel, including several cross-country automobile trips, complete with tent camping, to visit virtually all of the USA National Parks. Highlights included hiking by moonlight to Delicate Arch at Arches National Park in Utah, rafting the Colorado River through the Grand Canyon in Arizona, and hiking in the Grand Canyon down to Phantom Ranch for a two-night stay.

Throughout her life she continued to travel, accompanying her husband on trips to visit numerous English language foreign schools abroad in Thailand, Italy, Dubai, and Nepal.  She also enjoyed visiting her daughter when Heather was working at various National Parks including Big Bend National Park in Texas, North Cascade National Park in Washington, and Sequoia-Kings Canyon National Park in California. She also visited her when Heather was working over about seven years for the United Nations in Europe.   In Nancy’s senior years, she and her husband enjoyed cruising in and to numerous locales including Bermuda, Hawaii, Cape Horn, Vietnam, China, Singapore, and Australia/New Zealand.  Despite the onset of poor health, she was thrilled to be able to take one last cruise to Spain, Portugal, and the Canary Islands.

The other ever-present feature in Nancy’s life was music, playing her cello in organized orchestras like the Kiwanis Youth Symphony in Racine WI and various community orchestras in the greater Boston area when she moved to Boston to work.  Her longest commitment was playing in the Concord (MA) Orchestra for over 35 years including on their 1998 tour to Chechia, Hungary, Slovenia, and Austria.  She also was a regular subscriber to the Boston Symphony Orchestra and looked forward to her annual trip to the Saratoga (NY) Performing Arts Center to enjoy listening to the Philadelphia Orchestra.  All of that was done, however, as a backdrop to raising her daughter Heather and supporting her husband in his career, in both of which she took great pride.

Relatives and friends are invited to visit and gather at the Bedford Funeral Home, 167 The Great Road, Bedford MA on Monday, May 1 between 3-7 PM.

In lieu of flowers, the family asks that you consider making a contribution in Nancy’s name to the Concord Orchestra (P. O. Box 381, Concord MA 01742) or to a charity of your choice.

Click here to read the complete announcement.

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