Cover photo for Molly Durgan Shea's Obituary
Molly Durgan Shea Profile Photo

Molly Durgan Shea

May 1, 1960 — May 7, 2024


Molly Durgan Shea

It is with the heaviest of hearts we share that Molly Durgan Shea, of Walpole, MA, passed away on Tuesday, May 7th, 2024, after a 9-month battle with pancreatic cancer and just under a week after her 64th birthday. As was fitting for Molly, she passed away peacefully in a room filled to the brim with so much family that it was standing room only - so many people that the hospice nurse earlier that day said it was the most she’s ever seen surrounding a loved one. 


Molly was born on May 1, 1960 in Plattsburgh, NY. She grew up in Peru, NY as the beloved daughter of the now deceased Robert “Bob” and Dolores Durgan. From Peru, Molly went on to graduate from Siena College, before eventually settling down in Boston. Molly has always been a tremendously artistic and imaginative person, able to see and create beauty in ways that others could not. In Boston she put this creativity to work attending and graduating from Rittners School of Floral Design. She then went on to spend many years as both a holiday designer for Cityscapes, as well as a self-employed wedding florist, starting her own small business, Molly Shea Design. It was also in Boston, 40 years ago, at The Black Rose Pub, where Molly met Daniel Shea, the man who would go on to be her loving husband for the next 37 years. The two lived in Hyde Park before moving to Walpole and starting Molly’s proudest achievement in life: her family. Together, Molly and Dan built a family on Pilots Way that could only be described by neighbors as both loving and loud. They worked as a team to raise five much-loved children, care for an endless stream of pets, and welcome anyone and everyone into their home, especially Molly’s first grandchild this past July, who allowed “Mom” to finally become “Grandma”, a role which she could not have filled more wonderfully. 


Molly is survived by her husband, Dan, their spirited children, Brendan (Erin) Shea, Courtney (Lindsay) Shea, Madison Shea (John Gallagher), Michaela Shea, and Kendall Shea (Sean Harrington), and their first granddaughter, Ellie Shea. Molly was also a fierce and loyal sister to the predeceased Judy (Corky) Cobb, who she joins now in heaven, as well as six surviving siblings in Robert “Ding” (Debbie) Durgan, Harry (Sharlene) Durgan, Cindy (Bruce) Bourgeois, John Durgan, Sarah (Brett) Hartman, and Bill (Roxanne) Durgan. Of course family for Molly always went beyond blood, and she was a devoted sister-in-law to Tom (Lyn) Shea and Kelly (Chuck) McKenzie as well as a beloved daughter-in-law to the late Thomas and Irene Shea. And, of course, as is fitting for someone who always put family above all else, Molly was also a caring and passionate aunt to 16 nieces and nephews, 15 great-nieces and nephews, and even a great-great-niece and a great-great-nephew. 


Molly has always shown a childlike awe and love of life. Whether it was riding her horse, Tommy, bareback through the fields as a kid, finding pennies and four-leaf-clovers everywhere she went, or hosting the most joyful and elaborate Christmas mornings, Molly truly had a special knack for enjoying all of the little things life has to offer and helping others do the same. This joy for life extended right up to the very end. Molly’s Pod of Porpoises was by far the largest and loudest group to attend this year’s Pancreatic Cancer Purple Stride event at the end of April, and Molly’s 64th birthday, on May 1st, was spent with family at Wingaersheek Beach, a place she spent countless hours with her children when they were young. Molly’s birthday embodied her ability to find joy in any situation, as it was a day of laughs and smiles despite being a cold and windy 45 degrees - Molly was never someone to let a little bad weather ruin a good time.

Molly lived life with the constant mindset of “the more the merrier” and her door was always open. She taught us to put family above all else, but also that “family” is anyone you welcome into your life. She will be missed by so many - not only by her direct family, but also by her unofficial brothers, sisters, and children. Anyone who crammed into the house for a party or a kids’ sleepover that definitely broke fire code; anyone who came to hang out in her backyard, built specifically for hosting the best parties on the block; or anyone who came on a family vacation (New York, Disney, etc) you were all considered family to Molly and she loved you all, just as we know you all loved her. Just like how she looked over all of us in life, we know she is now looking down and smiling on us all forevermore.

 Relatives and friends are kindly invited to attend Molly's Life Celebration on Monday, May 13th, 2024 from 4:00 - 7:00 pm in the James H. Delaney & Son Funeral Home, 48 Common Street, Walpole.

A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at Blessed Sacrament Church, 10 Diamond Street, Walpole on Tuesday, May 14, 2024 at 11:00 AM. Interment will follow at Saint Francis Cemetery.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations in Molly's name may be made to the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network’s “PanCan Purple Stride” event, under the team Molly’s Pod of Porpoises.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Molly Durgan Shea, please visit our flower store.

Past Services

Life Celebration

Monday, May 13, 2024

4:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

James H. Delaney & Son Funeral Home

48 Common St, Walpole, MA 02081

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Mass of Christian Burial

Tuesday, May 14, 2024

Starts at 11:00 am (Eastern time)

Blessed Sacrament Church

10 Diamond St, Walpole, MA 02081

Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


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