Thomas F. Behan ’62 died on April 22, 2020, in Haverhill, Massachusetts.
(The following was provided by the Comeau Funeral Home on April 22, 2020)
Thomas F. Behan, a devoted family man and popular school principal, passed away on April 22, 2020, at Holy Family Hospital in Methuen from Covid-19. Tom was survived by his loving wife, Patricia, of fifty-eight years. He was 80 years old.
The loving son of the late Francis and Alice Behan, he was born in Haverhill on September 11, 1939, and was a life-long resident of the city. He graduated from Haverhill High School in 1957 where he served as class president for four years. After high school, he did a post-grad year at Phillips Academy in Andover. He received a bachelor of science degree in education from Springfield College, a master of education degree from Indiana University, and a master of school administration degree from the University of New Hampshire. Mr. Behan began his career teaching science at Hunking School before becoming a school principal. Known as a supportive, caring, and dedicated leader, who would often play kickball and toss the football around with students at recess, he was principal of Hunking, St. James, Silver Hill ,and Moody schools in Haverhill. After retiring from the Haverhill school system, he was principal of Meritor Academy in North Andover. He also served on the Haverhill School Committee for four years. He was a passionate educator who made a difference in the lives of many children. Sports were always a big part of his life; he was a member of the 1955 HHS State Championship football team. He went on to coach football at Haverhill High School and coached his sons for many years playing baseball at St. Joseph’s Little League. Later in life, he enjoyed golfing and fishing with his grandchildren and attending their many sporting events. He was always their number one Fan. Known by his grandchildren as GT, he was always one to make them smile and laugh. His creation of the Wasabi Club and trips to the Super Buffet will be happy memories for them all.
His greatest joy in life was being surrounded by family and friends. He had a welcoming smile, positive energy, and when he told a story, the whole room listened. He loved hosting Sunday cookouts by the pool on North Broadway, fishing and boating at Goose Rocks Beach, weekends at Hampton Beach, and winters in Florida with his wife, Pat. His hobbies included gardening, flowers, and landscaping. He will be dearly missed by his loving family and friends.
Tom is survived by his loving wife of fifty-eight years, Patricia M. (Costello) Behan of Haverhill; his children, Mark Behan and his wife, Leslie, of Newton, NH, Mary Ward and her husband, Robert, of Haverhill; Susan Tashjian and her husband, Gregory, of Haverhill; Michael Behan of Rusk, TX; grandchildren Stephen Behan and his wife, Erin; Patrick Ward; Eric Ward and his fianceé Casey Taylor; Timothy Tashjian; Brian Ward; Amy Tashjian; and Daniel Tashjian; great grandchildren, Ayanna Short, Ashlyn and Sadie Behan; sister- in- law, Joanne (Costello) Skofield of York, ME, Robert and Mary Costello of East Kingston, NH; Harold and Sheila (Costello) Francis of Groveland; several first cousins and many loving nieces and nephews. In addition to his parents, he was predeceased by Ray and Kay (Costello) Bergeron.