John H. Beckwith, Sr., 80, former Great Barrington Selectman and police officer

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By Friday, Jul 21 Obituaries

John H. Beckwith Sr.

John H. Beckwith Sr.

John H. Beckwith, Sr., “Bootsie”, 80, of Great Barrington, Mass., died July 19, 2017 at Fairview Hospital.

A native and lifelong resident he was born in Great Barrington, Mass., on July 10, 1937, the son of the late Dewey and Hazel Taggart Beckwith.

He was a 32-year member of the Great Barrington Police Department and served as a selectman for six years. John also worked for the Schweitzer Paper Co. and E.B. Dolby Florist.

He cared greatly for community and was always willing to lend a helping hand. He was best friends with most every dog he met for they knew “Bootsie” always had treats for them.

As John felt that the traffic island at the Route 23/Route 71 intersection was not well maintained and unsafe for the public, he decided to take matters into his own hands. He became the caretaker by planting a flower garden and keeping the grass mowed every year for many years. When he moved from that area of town someone else took over that tradition.

John was an avid New York Yankees fan.

He is survived by his wife of 38 years, Wanda Wirth Beckwith. The couple was married on November 25, 1978 in South Egremont. He is also survived by his children, John Beckwith, Jr. (Ruth) and Valerie Abradi (Richard), his grandchildren, Alex, Valerie, Elliott, Ryan and Sam as well as his sister, Barbara Goyette.

He was predeceased by his brothers, Harold and Robert.

A service celebrating John’s life will be held on Friday, July 28th at 11 a.m. at FINNERTY & STEVENS FUNERAL HOME in Great Barrington.

Those who wish may make donations in his memory to either the Berkshire Humane Society or Alzheimer’s Association through FINNERTY & STEVENS FUNERAL HOME, 426 Main St., Great Barrington, MA 01230. To send remembrances to his family please go to

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