Today’s Obituaries: Michael J. Dempsey, 63

Michael J. Dempsey, 63, of Los Angeles, Calif., and formerly of Haverhill, passed away Sept. 5, after a brief illness with his loving family by his side. Born in Haverhill, he was the son of Helen T. (Hayes) Dempsey of Haverhill and the late James C. Dempsey. Raised and educated in Haverhill, he attended St. James Grammar School and Whittier Tech, graduating in the class of 1975.

Today’s Obituaries: Former Haverhill Highway Superintendent James Flaherty Dies at 78

The man who steered the city’s public works department through deep budget cuts and layoffs after voters approved the tax-limiting law Proposition 2 1/2 40 years ago, died yesterday morning at 78. James M. “Jim” Flaherty Sr. died at home after an extended illness surrounded by his family and close friends. Flaherty, who worked his way up from laborer to highway superintendent, would later guide his department through another round of deep cuts when the city’s finances collapsed with the failure of the city-owned Hale Hospital. His 47-year city career ended, however, when he was accused of taking city material for use in his own paving business. It was a charge Flaherty denied and, despite receiving backing from two former mayors, he lost his case in 2009.

Today’s Obituaries—Aug. 18: William J. Cunningham, 89, Established Coastal Industries

William J. Cunningham, 89, a lifelong resident of Haverhill, died Saturday, Aug. 15, at his home, surrounded by his loving family. Born and raised in Haverhill, son of the late Henry and Delia (Dodier) Cunningham, he attended Haverhill schools. Mr. Cunningham established Coastal Industries Inc. of Haverhill in 1973 and served as President of the window and door manufacturing and sales company located in the Newark Street Industrial Park. He was a member of All Saints Parish and the former Saint Joseph Parish.

Mike Ryan, Red Sox ‘Impossible Dream’ Season Catcher, Dies at 78

WHAV Sports Director Paul Ryan, Mike Ryan’s cousin, appears on WHAV’s “Win for Breakfast” this morning. The Boston Red Sox mourn the loss of Mike Ryan, who passed away in his sleep on Tuesday at the age of 78 in Wolfeboro, N.H.

He spent 35 years in professional baseball, including his first seven in the Red Sox organization as a player. A former catcher, he played in 79 regular season games for the Red Sox during their 1967 Impossible Dream season, also appearing in Game 4 of the 1967 World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals. Born in Haverhill on Nov.

Today’s Obituaries—July 11: Peter M. Brown, 59

Peter M. Brown, 59, of Haverhill, passed away Wednesday July 8, at his home after a lengthy illness. He was born in Haverhill Oct. 25, 1960, son of the late Edward “Ted” and Evelyn R. (Pitocchelli) Brown. He graduated from Haverhill High School. class of 1978.

Today’s Obituaries—July 9: Esther S. Rosen, Longtime Haverhill High School Head Librarian

Esther S. Rosen, a daughter of Jewish immigrant shopkeepers whose intellectual curiosity drove a lifetime of learning, teaching, and stimulating conversation, died July 7 after a brief illness. The North Andover, Mass., resident was 96. Mrs. Rosen was the matriarch of a large family, and she was always ready to offer a book recommendation, a wry observation, or a word of the Yiddish that she hoped would survive her generation. She was particularly interested in theology, and she spent a lifetime interrogating her own Jewish traditions—but always reveling in the Passover and Hanukkah gatherings she hosted into her 90s. Mrs. Rosen was born Esther Solomon and raised in Roxbury, Mass., where she lived in an apartment over the grocery store that her parents owned.

Today’s Obituaries—July 6: Herbert ‘Herb’ Basiliere Jr., Owner of Herb’s Seafood

Herbert N. “Herb” Basiliere Jr., 89, a lifelong resident of Haverhill and owner of the former Herb’s Seafood in Haverhill, died June 30, at Holy Family Hospital in Methuen. Born, raised and educated in Haverhill, he was the son of the late Herbert and Eva (Dionne) Basiliere. He attended Saint Joseph Grammar School and Haverhill Trade School before working in the local shoe industry. A veteran of the Korean Conflict, Basiliere served as a corporal in the U.S. Army from 1952 until 1954, and was a recipient of the National Defense Service Medal and the Good Conduct Medal. Following his honorable discharge from the service, Basiliere returned home to join his father in his newly established business, Herb’s Seafood, which was located for decades in Lafayette Square, Haverhill.