Dr. Paul Driscoll McMaster, 89, of Worcester, formerly of Auburn, passed away on June 9, 2021, at Tatnuck Park in Worcester, reuniting him with Joan Marie (Thornton) McMaster, his beloved wife of fifty-seven years, who passed away on February 7.
Paul leaves behind his children, Dr. MaryKate McMaster of Oxford, Paul D. McMaster (Deborah) of Bourne, and Dr. Erin M. McMaster McGill (James) of Auburn, nine grandchildren, Daniel, Timothy, Kelsey, and Mackenzie McMaster, Michael and Raeann Vuona, and Matthew, Ally, and Nicole McGill. In addition, Paul is survived by his brother, Timothy J. McMaster (Kathleen) of Mashpee, and many nieces and nephews. The third child and eldest son of Percy Waldo and Mary Virginia (Driscoll) McMaster, Paul was predeceased by his parents and his sisters Mary Noreen McMaster, Anne E. Reardon, Margaret C. Farrey, and Fayne A. Kowalski.
Born in Norwich, Connecticut on February 24, 1932, Paul grew up on Vernon Hill and graduated from St. John’s High School. After he discovered his love for Chemistry during a post-grad year at Classical High School, Paul entered the class of 1954 at The College of the Holy Cross as a Chemistry major. He participated in the Navy ROTC program while at Holy Cross and spent several years after graduation as an officer on the U.S.S. Beale, stationed in Norfolk, Virginia. When he returned to Worcester, Paul began the Chemistry Ph.D. program at Clark University. After graduating in 1961, he began his thirty-nine year career in the Chemistry Department at Holy Cross. Paul’s specialty was Organic Chemistry, and he spent decades teaching students in the classroom and mentoring them in his laboratory. In addition to teaching, Paul chaired the Chemistry Department for many years, served on and chaired numerous committees, and served as the academic advisor to the basketball teams. For many years, Paul also was a consultant for Astra Pharmaceutical, working to create anti-arrhythmic drugs. Throughout his long career he contributed articles to multiple national scientific journals.
A warm and selfless family man and an outstanding role model, Paul was devoted to Joan, his children, his grandchildren, and the large McMaster and Thornton families. He was thoughtful, patient, and loving, with a quick wit and a wonderful sense of humor. Paul was a very positive and happy person who loved his life, and his beautiful blue eyes twinkled when he smiled. During his spare time, Paul created a magnificent garden at his Auburn home that he loved to give tours of, sharing the scientific name and origin of every plant he owned. He loved to golf and enjoyed teaching others the finer points of the game. Paul was a fabulous bowler, leading the league at Auburn Bowl for a number of years. He was an active member of St. Ann’s Parish in North Oxford and supported his children in their interests, working backstage at decades of dance recitals. After his retirement in 2000, Paul continued to travel, spend time with friends and attend Holy Cross basketball games and Hanover Theatre performances with Joan. He also enjoyed having more time for gardening, golf, and grandchildren.
The family would like to thank Paul’s caregivers from Family Tree and Brookhaven Hospice, the dedicated staff at Tatnuck Park, and Deacon James Denning.
Calling hours are Sunday, June 13, from 5:00 to 8:00 p.m., at the Athy Memorial Home, 111 Lancaster St., Worcester. The funeral Mass will be at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, June 14, at St. Ann’s Church, 654 Main St., North Oxford. Burial will be in St. John’s Cemetery, Worcester.
Donations in Paul’s name are suggested to a charity founded by his great-nephew Michael Papale, In a Heartbeat Foundation, 30 Dutton St., Wallingford, CT 06492 (www.inaheartbeat.org).