On a bus trip back from a field trip to the Salesians Boys and Girls Club in East Boston a group of camp counselors thought it would be a treat if the bus stopped at McDonald’s so the kids could eat. Once they pulled into the famed fast food restaurant all the counselors and kids jumped off the bus and ran in to get their fix of burgers and fries–except for four brothers huddled in the back of the bus.
Wally Bowe, Boys and Girls Club director and mentor, quietly approached the brothers and asked what was up.
“We have no money,” the brothers told Bowe. The four brothers were from a single parent home being raised by their widowed mother so money was scarce.
Bowe, stood up, reached into his pocket and quietly gave each brother $5 so they could get something to eat.
That was the type of guy Wally Bowe was.
Bowe, a longtime East Boston resident that grew up on Chelsea Street and dedicated his life to the youth here died suddenly in 2010 at his home in Saugus. Bowe was 53 years old.
Bowe death came as a great shock followed by tremendous sadness from residents across Eastie.
“Wally Bowe spent much of his life giving selflessly to others. Working for decades in East Boston, at the Salesian Boys & Girls Club, Savio High School and the Umana Middle School, Wally made a tangible impact on the lives of thousands of young people,” said his wife, Darlene Bowe “Everyone who knew him knew that Wally was a popular guy in the community, but no one was prepared for the amazing number of people who came to pay their respects when he suddenly passed away nearly four years ago. He was truly admired and loved throughout East Boston and beyond.”
Now, those of who knew him best have created The Wally Bowe Fund – not only to keep his memory alive, but also to continue the good work he did every day as a coach, teacher and role model for local youth.
The fund, administered by his daughters Jillian and Janae, wife Darlene, and others in the community, will provide support to the Salesian Boys & Girls Club, a non-profit organization that Wally attended as a young man and where he worked for 25 years.
The fund will host its first event on April 11 at the Beachmont, VFW.
“In addition, we are seeking donations to defray the cost of the evening and to make a contribution to the Salesian Boys & Girls Club, a program that has been serving children and teens from East Boston and surrounding communities since 1945,” said Bowe. “The club offers an after-school program during the school year as well as a all-day summer program. Young people of all ages receive homework help, take part in athletics, use their creativity in arts and crafts, and become involved in many other activities and programs in a safe, structured environment.”
Admission donation will be $20.00 and checks can be made payable to: The Wally Bowe Fund, Attn; Nancy LoConte, 81 Leyden Street, East Boston, Ma 02128. Clearly state the amount of attendees and their names.