OXFORD – Francis C. Rawson, Jr. 92, of Oxford, died Saturday, September 23, 2023, at the Overlook Masonic Health Center in Charlton. He was predeceased by his wife of 53 years, Barbara A. (Mara) Rawson, who died in 2004. He is survived by three children, James F. Rawson and his wife Cynthia of Dudley, Deborah S. Reich and her husband Thomas of Webster, and Pamela J. Wunsch and her husband Edward of Douglas; a sister, Jean White of Marblehead; six grandchildren, Amanda Rawson, Christopher Rawson, Alexandra McCarty, Jeremy Wunsch, Caitlyn Wunsch, and Timothy Wunsch; five great-grandchildren; and several nephews and nieces. He was predeceased by a daughter, Lynn Rawson; and six brothers and sisters. He was born in Webster, son of the late Francis C. and Esther (Hoyle) Rawson, and lived most of his life in Oxford. He graduated from Oxford High School, received a bachelor's degree from Fitchburg State University, and received a master’s degree from Anna Maria College. He was a U.S. Air Force veteran of the Korean War.
Mr. Rawson was an industrial arts teacher at Shrewsbury Public Schools for 30 years, retiring as department head in 1988. Previously he was a teacher for Auburn Public Schools. He spent over 20 years as a member of the Oxford Fire Department, serving as Rescue Chief, Forest Fire Chief, and retiring as District Chief. In addition, he was a reserve police officer for the Oxford Police Department for over 20 years. His service to Oxford also included working for the Department of Public Works where he plowed in the winter and cared for the town cemeteries. He assisted with building and purchasing fire engines and the rescue truck, along with overseeing and assisting with the construction of the North Oxford Fire Station, the former Oxford Police Station and the DPW garage.
Mr. Rawson was a member of the American Legion in Webster and Oxford, and the V.F.W. in Oxford. He was a member of the Singletary Rod and Gun Club and Webster Fish and Game. Throughout his life he loved to cook, and was well-known for his cheesecakes. He loved farms and farming, and gave away vegetables to everyone in the community, especially families in need and the food bank. His hobbies included cooking family dinners, woodworking, carpentry, working in his yard and gardening.
Calling hours are Friday, September 29, 2023, from 4-6 p.m. at Paradis-Givner Funeral Home, 357 Main St., Oxford. A service including military funeral honors will be held on Friday at 6:00 p.m. at the conclusion of calling hours. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to a charity of your choice.