Alfred John Pacelli of Osterville died on January 25, 2017 at Pavilion Rehabilitation and Nursing Center, Hyannis, of complications from Parkinson’s disease; he was 91 years old. Alfred was born in Boston but grew up in Brooklyn, New York, the son of Alfred Constantine and Marguerite Cecilia (Streadwick) Pacelli. He attended Brooklyn Technical High School, stimulating his interest in becoming a civil engineer.
Alfred graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in Civil Engineering in 1946. At Northeastern, he wrote a popular column as sports editor of the university newspaper, ran the dashes on the track team, and managed the basketball team, including playing one game. He also met at college his future wife, Margaret Mulligan of Foxborough, Massachusetts; they married in July 1948 at St. Mary’s Church, Foxborough, and they celebrated their 68th wedding anniversary in 2016.
After graduation, Alfred gained certifications as a Professional Engineer and Registered Land Surveyor and began a 23-year career with the New York Central Railroad. He rose in the Maintenance of Way Department—maintaining track and track beds and building bridges in a variety of assignments in Massachusetts and New York—and he eventually became a Division Superintendent. He left the railroad in 1959 to become Superintendent of Eastern Railroad Builders, a firm that built railroad sidings.
In 1962, he began a 25-year career with the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority and became Chief of Construction, the third-ranking position in the transit system. Alfred was in charge of building the Red Line to Braintree, supervising the Southwest Corridor Project of rail and rapid transit, and revamping Green Line stations, track, and signals—the largest public works expenditures in Massachusetts history at that time. One of his proudest moments was taking the controls of the first Red Line train to Braintree, the first train to the town in a hundred years.
After many years of living in Braintree, Alfred retired to Osterville in 1989 and enjoyed living on the Cape and years as an avid tennis player.
He is survived by his wife Margaret C. Pacelli of Osterville, and their children: David Pacelli and his wife Nancy Wigginton of Great Falls, Virginia; Richard Pacelli and his partner Susan Melanson of Northbridge, Massachusetts; Christopher Pacelli and his wife Nancy of Foxborough, Massachusetts; and Jennifer Pacelli of Woonsocket, Rhode Island. He also is survived by grandchildren Colin, Brendan, Devin, and Caelan Pacelli and Kaitlyn and Taylor Mae Fano; great-grandchildren Benjamin Cole and Margaret Pacelli; and first cousins Frank Finch of Whitman, Massachusetts, and Jeanette Delaney and Lonny Streadwick of Wichita Falls, Texas.
A funeral Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated on January 30, 2017 at Our Lady of the Assumption Catholic Church and burial was at Hillside Cemetery, both in Osterville. The entire family would like to thank the John-Lawrence Funeral Home in Marston Mills for their exceptional services.