Obituary for Roger Sumner Babb
Babb, Roger Sumner, 83, of Newton, died January 23, 2018. He was born January 7, 1935, and grew up in Bridgewater MA. Over the years he has resided in Norwell MA, Newton MA, Atlanta, GA and Shrewsbury, MA. He is survived by his two daughters Melissa Babb Gulley and Kimberly Sumner Babb, their respective husband’s Kevin Jon Gulley and Niall George Howlett and 5 grandchildren; his sister Marjorie Charlotte Holmes, her husband David Claude Holmes, his nephew Jonathan Holmes and niece Jennifer Holmes Katsirubas. He is also survived by his former wife and friend Judith M. Babb. Roger graduated from Bridgewater High School, class of 1952 and went on to earn his BA in Government and Economics from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1956. He received his Law degree from the University of Michigan in 1959. He began his distinguished career as a trial attorney in private practice and as a managing
attorney for Liberty Mutual Insurance Company. From 1969 to 1974, he served 3 terms as the Massachusetts State Representative from the Marshfield, Duxbury, and Norwell district, In 1974, he was appointed Special Assistant to the United States Secretary of the Interior, Northeast region and then served two decades as Regional Solicitor for the US Department of the Interior. He initially managed the Northeast Region based in Newton, MA and then the Southeast Region, based in Atlanta, GA. After retirement from the Federal Government, he continued to practice law independently and as a contractor for the United States Department of the Interior, Fish and Wildlife Service. He later served as the Chairman of the Massachusetts Board of Appeals on Motor Vehicle Liability and Automobile Surcharges. Never slowing down, since 2011, he served as a member and Vice Chairman of the Board of Governors of Shriners Hospital for Children in Springfield, MA, where he was a member of the Credentials, Finance and Strategic Planning Committees. He was recently honored as an Emeritus Member of the Board. He was Treasurer of the Massachusetts Legislators Association, as well as an active member of the Last of the 240 Massachusetts legislators organization. He was a member of Morning Star Masonic Lodge A.F. & A.M. in Worcester, The York Rite, and the Scottish Rite. A member of Cairo Shriners in Rutland, VT, and member of Boston Court #103, Royal Order of Jesters. He was a member of the Bohemians club in Worcester, the Shrewsbury Republican Town Committee, the Newton Democratic Committee, Roger had a gracious and vibrant personality, he made friends wherever he went. He loved food, family dinners, baseball, colorful art, cartoons and most of all collecting books. A memorial service will be held on February 17, 2018, with visiting hours from 1:30-3:30 pm and service at 3:30 pm at Burke & Blackington Funeral Home 1479 Washington Street, West Newton MA 02465. At Roger’s request, please make memorial contributions to Shriners Hospital for Children, 516 Carew St., Springfield, MA 01104 for the Wheelchair Fund.