John Mackey Obituary (1964 – 2022) – Guilford, CT

John J. Mackey, Jr.
January 6, 2022

John Joseph Mackey, Jr. of Guilford passed away on Thursday, January 6, 2022, surrounded by his loving family. He was the beloved husband of Wendy Lord Mackey for 27 years. John was born February 23, 1964 in New Haven, the son of the late John Mackey, Sr. and Paina O’Keefe Mackey.
Besides his wife, he is survived by his children James Joseph Lord Mackey, Tessa Rose Lord Mackey and Lily Maeve Lord Mackey of Guilford; his brother William F. Mackey (Denise) of Middlefield, CT, and his sisters, Margo Mackey Potts (Blair) of Charlotte, NC and Fionnuala Mackey Browning (David) of Old Greenwich, CT, and several nieces and nephews- Ryan Mackey and Jillian Mackey Simms; Pain Forlizzi and Mary Potts; Siobhan, Mikaela and Aedan Browning; William and Matthieu Farmer.
John has dedicated his professional life to education, having taught French and Spanish for over 25 years. He was a teacher at Lyman Hall High School in Wallingford until his retirement in 2018, where he built a strong and popular curriculum in French. He managed the ski club and the French club, allowing him to share his passion for travel and adventure with his students. One of the highlights of his career was being appointed Fulbright Scholar, which allowed him to teach for a year in Cannes, France. Additionally, John taught Spanish at Quinnipiac University. John graduated from Notre Dame High School in New Haven, where he met his best friends. He also holds several degrees from Southern Connecticut State University, including a Bachelor of Arts (major in history), a master’s degree in education and French, and a 6th year (30 post-master’s credits) in Spanish. He is also a proud veteran of the United States Army, having served eight years in the National Guard.
John Joe loved life and lived every moment to the fullest, sharing it with everyone around him. He has coached just about every sport his children play: Gaelic football, soccer and hockey, even though he could not skate. He was also an avid athlete, running 3 marathons, completing a 100 mile cancer bike ride, numerous triathlons, the annual New Haven 20 mile road race and skiing whenever he could. A first-generation Irish American, John was a life member of the New Haven Gaelic Football and Hurling Club, as president, Gaelic football coach and avid volunteer. He was honored with the Irish Man of the Year 2021 for his years of service. He helped bring the kids to the club, revived the Gaelic Youth Sports program and developed an annual summer camp for Irish cultural children that filled children’s brains and bodies with all things Irish. for many years. Additionally, he coached and won an Irish Championship Cup for the New York County team Feile. In his mother’s place, John performed in several Gaelic Players theatrical productions.
The other great love of his life was his music. John started singing in the Trinity Boys Choir at the age of 6 – and sang proudly for the Queen of England and in the White House – and sang until his last moments. Some of his happiest memories were on stage singing with his band “Just One More” or singing “O Danny Boy” to his three children as they fell asleep. John Joe quickly became anyone’s friend; whether he was your bartender, your teacher, your friend or your acquaintance, he knew exactly how to make you laugh. John Joe’s life was a party and everyone was invited. Above all, he was the most extraordinary husband and father in his family. He leaves a legacy of memories, lessons and songs that will fill our hearts forever.
Visiting hours are Tuesday evening, January 11 from 4:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m. at the WS Clancy Memorial Funeral Home, 244 North Main Street, Branford. A funeral service will be held on Wednesday January 12 at 2 p.m. at the First Congregational Church in Guilford, 122 Broad St., Guilford. A live stream link from the funeral service will be shared. Reception to follow.
With all due respect, please adhere to strict Covid protocols – masks are essential, social distancing will be required – windows will be open at the Funeral Service – please dress warmly.
Instead of flowers; donations can be made to any of the following:
New Haven Gaelic Football and Hurling Club – Youth Sports Program
9 Venice Place, New Haven, CT 06512 (In memory of John Mackey)
Orchard House – Adult Day Center
421Shore Drive, Branford, CT 06504 (in memory of John Mackey)
or click the donate button on their website:
For directions and the online memorial, see

Posted by The New Haven Register on January 9, 2022.

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