PEPPERELL — Dr. John E. Fleming, 86, a former longtime resident of Townsend Street, died Wednesday evening, Nov. 14, 2007, surrounded by the love and care of his family.

He is survived by his wife of 60 years, Margaret D. (Walsh) Fleming; five children, Mary Ann Fleming and her husband, Paul McGowan of Cape Neddick, Maine, Dr. Gregory J. Fleming and his wife, Ruth Ann, of Short Hills, N.J., Beth F. Birkett and her husband, Gary, of Milford, N.H., Mercedes Roy and her husband, Philippe, of Exeter, N.H., and Claudia Fleming and her fiancé, George Bitar, of New York City. He leaves nine grandchildren, Lauren F. Pavlidis, Elise Birkett, Reid Birkett, Genevieve Fleming, Christopher Fleming, Rebecca Fleming, Meredith Roy, Morgan Grandi and Christian Grandi. He also leaves his dearest friend and “brother,” Holden C. Harlow, of Westfield, Mass.

He was the brother of the late Kathleen Mager of South Yarmouth.

John was born in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, on Jan. 12, 1921, the son of Edward J. and Nora T. (Connolly) Fleming. He resided in Pepperell for over 30 years, later residing in Homosassa Springs, Fla., and Manchester, N.H.

During WW II he valiantly served his country in the United States Army Air Corps. During his 36 months of service he was assigned to the 415th Night Fighter Squadron as a crew chief, primarily stationed in North Africa and Italy, serving in seven campaigns.

A graduate of Lawrence Academy in Groton, Mass., upon his return from his tour of duty he attended St. Anslem College where he attained a bachelor of science degree in economics, magna cum laude. It was while studying at St. Anslem that John met and married his lovely wife, Margaret.

After graduating from Tufts Dental School, John and Peggy resided in Pepperell, where they built a dental practice. For three decades he was dedicated to the care of his patients. A quiet philanthropist, he regularly gave to religious and educational institutions.

Dr. Fleming was a member of the American Dental Association, the Massachusetts Dental Society and was a member of the dental staff at the Nashoba Community Hospital in Ayer. He was elected to the Pepperell Board of Health and served on the Hawthorne Brook Elementary School and Varnum Brook Middle School Building Committees. He was a former member and past president of the Groton-Pepperell Rotary Club. He also served as a trustee to the Pepperell Public Library. He was a communicant of St. Joseph’s Church, Pepperell.

A funeral Mass was celebrated on Monday, Nov. 19 at St. Joseph’s Church in Pepperell, followed by burial in the parish cemetery.

Arrangements were handled for the family by the T.J. Anderson & Son Funeral Home, Townsend. Please see for additional information.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Alzheimer’s Association, 225 N. Michigan Ave., Floor 17, Chicago, IL 60601-7633.