Longtime John Hanright passed away Monday night at an area hospital.
As we gather more information about Hanright's passing, we'd like you to share with us and our readers your memories about the town clerk.
You can post a comment in the comments section below or email Stoneham Patch Editor Mark Ouellette at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tuesday morning, we received this letter from Stoneham Fire Chief Joseph Rolli recalling his experiences with Hanright:
Members of the were saddened Monday morning as news came to the firehouse of the passing of Town Clerk John Hanright. John Hanright was a true friend to the Firefighters of Stoneham. A fire buff in every sense of the word, John would engage with Firefighters with what was going on, how they were doing, etc.
John would listen to his scanner like a teenager listens to their ipod. Many times when we would converse John would ask me, “What did Quincy have last night?” or “Did Melrose just get a new piece of apparatus?” I will humbly admit that John knew more about what was going on with Fire Departments outside of Stoneham than me.
I would often visit John in his office to shoot the breeze about the Fire Department, the Town, and many other issues. He was a true Townie in every sense of the word. At first I would visit his office when I had a couple of minutes to waste and soon found out if I was going to his office I better have an hour to waste. He was joy to talk to and boy could he talk.
If you looked up Town Clerk in the dictionary, it should just say John Hanright. A robust man who did nothing but serve the citizens and help as many people out as possible.
It is customary for the Fire Department to lower its flag at half staff for active and retired members of the Fire Department who have passed on. Many Firefighters came to me when learned of John’s passing and asked if we could lower it for the first time for a non-member of the Fire Department. We all agreed John was more than the Town Clerk; he was a member of the Fire Department. It felt like John was every member of the Fire Departments older brother. offering advice, support and loyalty.
I, along with the member of the Fire Department are emotionally hurt to lose John Hanright, but we all know how lucky we were to have John as part of us. Godspeed to you our friend, we miss you already.
— Chief Joseph W. Rolli