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TOWNSEND — Francis L. Gyles, Sr., 71, of 140 Lunenburg Road, West Townsend, died Jan. 31 at Beth Israel Deaconess Hospital in Boston after an illness.

Mr. Gyles was born Sept. 29,1934 in Barnet, Vt., a son of the late Robert and Margaret (Whittier) Gyles and has resided in Townsend for over 40 years.

Mr. Gyles worked for many years as a truck driver, and also operated a farm on his property. He was a member of the Teamster Union Local #170 and was a lifetime member of the NRA. Mr. Gyles enjoyed hunting, fishing, his log cabin and spending time with family and friends.

He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Shirley M. (Mountain) Gyles; three sons, Francis L. Gyles Jr. and his wife, Lois, of Fitchburg, David E. Gyles and his wife, Helen, of New Hampshire, and TSgt. Robert L. Gyles and his wife, Melissa, of North Carolina; a daughter, Deborah A. Gyles of Townsend; three brothers, Roscoe Gyles, of Arkansas, Daniel Gyles ,of Maine, and Kenneth Gyles ,of Townsend; two sisters, Carrie Whitney, of Leominster, and Margaret Tule, of Ashburnham.

He also leaves seven grandchildren, Daniel Gyles, Darrell Gyles, Rae-Ann Gyles, Cody Gyles, Torri Gyles, Madison Gyles, Shawn Gyles Sr.; two great-grandchildren, Hannah English-Gyles and Shawn Gyles, Jr., as well as special family members Adam Guilmette and Shannon Coyne.

He was the brother of the late Merrill Gyles Sr., of Townsend, Robert Gyles Jr., of Ayer, Iris Hanks, of Townsend, and Maude Chaple, of Shirley.

Services will be at the convenience of the family. There are no calling hours.

Memorial contributions may be made in his name to the Melanoma Research Fund, Dr. Michael Atkins, Beth Israel Medical Center, 330 Brookline Avenue, E/KS-185, Boston, MA 02215

The T. J. Anderson & Son Funeral Home, Townsend is assisting the family with the arrangements.

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