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Roberta C Shanks
October 9, 2023
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Roberta C. Shanks, 81, of Waltham, a beloved member of her community and respected former educator, passed away peacefully on October 9, 2023, at Newton Wellesley Hospital. Born and raised in Boston, MA, Roberta was known for her intelligence, generosity, and selflessness.
Roberta was the loving daughter of the late Mildred (Eis) and John J. Shanks. She is survived by her sister Dorothy Fitzpatrick of Kingston, her brother Edward Shanks of Delray Beach, FL, and several nieces and nephews: Kelly Fitzpatrick of So. Weymouth, Karen Johnson of Marshfield, John Dower of NY, Deborah McCleary of TN, and Cynthia Kiernan of CT. She was predeceased by her sister Sandra Dower of CT, as well as her longtime companion Chuck Tierney and his four-legged friend CJ.
After graduating from St. Thomas Aquinas High School, Roberta pursued her passion for education at Boston College, where she earned her BA in Education. While at BC, she became the first woman editor of the BC student newspaper. She dedicated several years of her life to shaping young minds as a teacher at Hyde Park High School. After her time in education, Roberta later transitioned into customer service roles in retail, banking, and telecommunications where her knowledge, patience and understanding were greatly appreciated by her colleagues and customers alike.
Roberta's interests were wide and varied, but she had a particular fondness for reading, traveling, and spending time with her family. She was also an animal lover, and she cherished the time she had with Samantha, Patches, Blossom, Rusty, and Blackie.
In addition to her love for animals, Roberta was also a dedicated philanthropist who devoted her time to various causes. For over 30 years, she volunteered for the Boston Marathon, demonstrating her commitment to her community and her belief in the power of collective effort. Roberta was also a longtime member of Zonta International that advocated for women's education and equality.
Her generosity of spirit was evident in every aspect of her life, from her professional work to her personal relationships.
Roberta was an extraordinary woman who touched the lives of many with her kindness and empathy. Her legacy of love, selflessness, and dedication will continue to live on in the hearts and minds of those fortunate enough to have known her. Her family, friends, and all those she has impacted mourn her passing but celebrate the remarkable life she led. Her memory will forever be cherished, and her contributions to her community will never be forgotten.
*A private graveside service will be held in the future at Brookdale Cemetery in Dedham.