Mr. John H. Dorenkamp III

  • Born: February 16, 1959
  • Died: March 26, 2019
  • Location: Worcester, Massachusetts

Callahan, Fay & Caswell Funeral Home

61 Myrtle Street
Worcester, MA 01608
Tel. (508) 755-1500

Tribute & Message From The Family

John Dorenkamp died March 26, 2019 after a sudden illness.

He was a gentle man with a fierce spirit. The son of Angela and John Dorenkamp (both deceased), John attended the Mercy School in Worcester and worked for many years in a Seven Hills sheltered workshop. Those who attended Assumption College might also remember him as the "dishwasher who made the fire drill sound." John was a resident of the Harrington Way Group Home for eighteen years but spent the last decade living with a home care provider who became his best friend, Abraham Gray.

John was assured a life of dignity by the dedicated staff of the Department of Social Services, by Nonotuck Resource Associates, and by the Alternatives Day Habilitation Program. The good people who sponsor dances for the disabled at the KasBar (and formerly at Sh-Boom's) brought him joy. He touched the hearts of many with his big smiles and bigger hugs. His family especially wishes to thank the line-cooks at IHop in Shrewsbury—they knew John's name and John knew theirs—and the wait staff of both the Broadway and Goldstar Diner. People like these, who immediately recognized John's goodness and innocence, made him feel special. And he was. John lost his youngest sibling, Monica, in 2018.

He is survived by Monica's partner, Margarita Reyes, by his older sister Erica and her partner Gretchen Neeley, by his younger brother Tom and his partner Kathleen Haggerty, by his step-mother Helen Whall, and by his nieces Harriet and Maud Neeley. They would like to thank the doctors and nurses of St. Vincent's Critical Care for their compassion and the extended Gray family for their unwavering love.

Visiting Hours will be held on Sunday, March 31st from 3:00-5:00 p.m. at Callahan, Fay & Caswell Funeral Home, 61 Myrtle Street, Worcester. In lieu of flowers, donations should be made to Alternatives (286 Lincoln Street, Worcester) or to the Worcester Animal Rescue League (139 Holden St., Worcester) where John volunteered on Fridays. A Memorial Celebration is being scheduled for late spring.


Condolence & Memory Journal

When we moved to the Brownell Street area in 1967, we first met John but he soon became a lifelong friend. All our children live out-of-state but when I told them of John's passing, they were all saddened and one said, "John was so much a part of our childhood." Our French toast breakfasts became an annual tradition and in recent phone calls he would always ask about our health first. He was such a caring, thoughtful person and we are grateful for the lessons he taught us about what really matters in life. Our sincere condolences go to the Dorenkamp family. Gene and Barbara McCarthy

Posted by Barbara McCarthy - Worcester, MA - Friend   March 28, 2019

I worked at Harrington Way for many years and JD was probably one of my favorites. He enjoyed a good pancake and going for a ride to the Hostess store.Rest in Peace.


Posted by Patricia Stone - Leesburg, FL   March 27, 2019

John your loving memories will forever live in our hearts. Even in death we still love and miss you dearly. Accepting that you have left us is the hardest. It hurts to say goodbye our sweet John, but we believe in our hearts that you are resting peacefully

Posted by Joanna Gray - Worcester, MA   March 27, 2019

My deepest sympathy to the Dorenkamp family on the loss of John. I worked at Taylor Dining hall for 25 years. John was a great employee very kind and caring. He had a strong work ethic. Ironically his mother and mine were roommates at the Jewish Home in Worcester. Rest in piece John. Monica Abdella

Posted by Monica Abdella - Worcester, MA   March 27, 2019

Family Album