Cover photo for James E. Gilcreast, Jr.'s Obituary
James E. Gilcreast, Jr. Profile Photo
1946 Jim 2023

James E. Gilcreast, Jr.

August 30, 1946 — September 5, 2023

North Providence

James Everett “Jim” Gilcreast Jr., of North Providence, died peacefully on September 5, 2023, in Providence, RI.  Son of the late James Everett Gilcreast Sr. and Mary F. (Dillon) Gilcreast, he was born on August 30, 1946, in Quincy, MA.  He was a proud Golden Eagle, graduating with a B.A. (1968) and M.A. (1981) in Political Science from Boston College.  He worked in advancement for many years, including Boston College, Chestnut Hill, MA, and as Director of Development for Rhode Island College and LaSalle Academy, Providence, RI.  He finished his career with AAA Northeast Insurance.

Jim had many passions in life, foremost his faith and his family.  Jim was a Past State Deputy for Knights of Columbus Rhode Island State Council, and a communicant of Mary, Mother of Mankind Catholic Church for 40 years. He was a member of the Equestrian Order of the Holy Sepulchre of Jerusalem, which entitled him, as he gleefully informed his family, to enter church on horseback.  His extensive civic and charitable work included serving on the boards of Mother of Life Center, Providence, RI, Special Olympics RI, Smithfield, RI, St. Mary Academy-Bay View, Riverside, RI, St. Thomas Regional School, Providence, RI, and the Bishop McVinney Foundation, Providence, RI.  He had perfect attendance as a member of Rotary International, including many years in the Providence club, where he was also a board member.  One of his favorite roles as a Rotarian was playing Santa Claus for the children of San Miguel School.  He was also a member of the Shamrock Society of North Providence, RI, and the Serra Club.

His quick wit and sense of humor was renowned by all.  Wherever he went, you could count on him running into someone he knew.  Jim’s mastery of trivia resulted in an appearance on Jeopardy! in 2005.  His love of rules and order led him to recently join the National Society of Parliamentarians just for fun.

Jim is survived by his wife, Mary (O’Connell), his children Diane of Wakefield, MA, Emily of Warwick, James III (Alison) of Ballston Spa, NY, Laura of Somerville, MA, and Daniel of Providence; siblings Linda of Medford, MA, Claudia (Andrew) Link of Lawrenceville, NJ, Paula (Martin) Zwiren of Hartsdale, NY, and Mark (Denise) of Tolland, CT, granddaughters Averyll and Haley, and numerous nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents and brother, Michael.

His funeral will be held on Tuesday, September 12, 2023 at 8:45 am from the Robbins Funeral Home, 2251 Mineral Spring Ave., with a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 am in Mary, Mother of Mankind Church, 25 Fourth St, North Providence.  Burial will follow in Resurrection Cemetery, Cumberland.  Calling hours Monday 4-7 pm.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to Mother of Life Center, Providence, RI https://www.motheroflife.org/ or Special Olympics RI, Smithfield, RI https://specialolympicsri.org/

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