LEOMINSTER --- Albert J. Marcoux, who left St. Cecilia’s School in the eighth grade and then went on to found Marcoux Upholstery of Leominster, died Tuesday, Jan. 14, at his home in Leominster. He was 92.
One of nine children, Mr. Marcoux was born in Leominster and spent most of his childhood on a farm on Pleasant Street where his parents, Joseph and Antoinette (Desrosiers) finally settled permanently after a series of moves within the city and also in various places in Vermont and Quebec. Indeed, two of his brothers were born in Vermont and one in Canada. They were a bi-lingual French and English speaking family.
Mr. Marcoux loved life on the farm and shared his enthusiasm for those days in the many tales of adventure he liked to tell. He especially liked to talk about his pet bobcat named Bob. Bob lived in the barn, feasted on what he could find in there, enjoyed daily squirts of milk from the cows, and accompanied Mr. Marcoux to market riding all the way into town on the express wagon. Mr. Marcoux was adept at the many tasks farm work required. By all accounts, he was the best brother one could have, sharing his skills with his siblings.
After leaving school, he continued to work on the farm and then landed a job at Selig Manufacturing, a local furniture company. Instead of piecework, Mr. Marcoux fashioned the whole piece of furniture that was put on display for customers and the sales staff. He became so accomplished at this that friends started asking him to reupholster their furniture, which he did in his basement. Eventually, he had so much of his own work that he asked for a leave of absence to handle it. Denied his request, he quit and thus, in 1947, he founded Marcoux Upholstery, still operating and owned by his son Michael.
Always a farmer at heart, Mr. Marcoux was widely known for his vegetable gardens and the lovely arrays of flowers that adorned his front yard. He was famous for producing succulent tomatoes, tender squash, and sweet green beans among many other tasty vegetables, all of which he shared generously with visitors to his home.
Mr. Marcoux worked in the business he started all his life, stepping back only recently. But around what many consider normal retirement age, he and his wife of nearly 70 years, Joanna (Serafino), started exploring the world, traveling to Paris, Greece, Italy, and a host of other destinations. They were also known to make a quick trip to the casinos, where Mr. Marcoux arrived with a pocketful of quarters. And, as he used to say, when they were gone, they were gone.
Following an injury that sidelined him for a while, Mr. Marcoux took up oil painting and discovered he had a real love and talent for it. He was fond of painting pastoral scenes, mining his memories to share his childhood joys of life on a farm. He also painted flower arrangements and what can be described as holy pictures. He was particularly fond of his paintings of the Bleeding Heart of Jesus and the Divine Mercy. In his semi-retirement, he enjoyed long walks, golfing, bowling, and reading his Bible in French. He also spent many a fond hour playing with his grandchildren.
Besides his wife, Joanna of Leominster, and his son Michael and his companion, Virginia Guertin, of Fitchburg, he leaves his daughters Denise Pelletier of New Hampshire and Suzanne Vercontaire and her husband, Joseph, of Texas, and son John and his wife, Maryann Gerhart, of Pennsylvania; two brothers Joseph and his wife, Jeannette, of Leominster and Adelard of Fitchburg, and a sister, Marie of Fitchburg; grandchildren John Pelletier of Westminster, Jason and his wife, BJ, of Texas, Nicole and her husband, Ben Speckhard, of New Hampshire, Catherine and her husband, Matt Belley of Chelmsford, Antoinette Marcoux and her fiancé, Chris Prud’homme of Boston, and Daniel and Andrew Marcoux of Virginia; four great grandchildren, Grace, Leia, Logan, and Conor; former daughters-in-law Beverly Cronin of Leominster and Linda Marcoux of North Carolina and former son-in-law Jack Pelletier of Orange, and many nieces and nephews. Five brothers, Gerard, Roland, Raymond, Robert, and Armand, and two grandsons, Mario Pelletier and Michael Vercontaire, predeceased him.
Albert’s funeral will be held on Monday, January 20, 2020 from the Silas F. Richardson & Son Funeral Home, 106 West St. Leominster, with a funeral mass at 11am in St. Leos Church 128 Main St. Leominster. Burial will follow in St. Leos Cemetery, Leominster. A calling hour will precede the funeral from 9:30 - 10:30 am. Please omit flowers, memorial contributions may be made to ST. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis TN, 38105.
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