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Atty. Michael Blaney

Atty. Michael C. Blaney

Thursday, August 31st, 1944 - Thursday, October 31st, 2019
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Obituary

Michael Charles Blaney died of complications due to an aortic aneurysm on the morning of Oct. 31, 2019.

He was born to Frances Veronica Blaney and Philip George Blaney of Enfield on Aug. 31, 1944, at the tail end of World War II. The youngest child in his family, he grew up admiring his older brother Dennis, who served in the U.S. Marine Corps, and his dear sister Patricia Blaney Goddard, who became one of the first nurse practitioners licensed by the state of Connecticut.

Michael grew up in Thompsonville, and lived most of his life in Enfield, where he raised three sons and practiced law for 45 years. The vice president and salutatorian of his senior class at Enfield High School in 1962, Michael was an accomplished high school athlete, playing baseball, basketball, and football, as well as serving as president of the Drama Club. He was a third-generation American on his mother's side and the first member of his family to graduate from college, with a bachelor's degree in mathematics from the University of Connecticut. He entered law school immediately thereafter. He married Christine Gravel in 1968, and graduated from UConn again, with his juris doctorate in 1969.

For much of his career, Attorney Blaney was in private practice, where he mentored other young lawyers and served hundreds of clients faithfully. In his time in practice, especially in his early career, he often worked as a criminal defense attorney and trial lawyer. Having a strong belief in the value of the American system of Constitutional law, democracy, and justice, he was dedicated to the principle of "innocent until proven guilty." A small town lawyer, Mike had a small number of dedicated employees who worked with him for many years. In the 1970s and 1980s, he was an active member of the Connecticut Democratic Party and campaigned for several politicians, including Chris Dodd and Toby Moffett.

Between 1969 and 1976, he fathered three sons, Darren Pat, Robert Mike, and Jeffrey Pete. Michael's greatest pride in life was the offspring he sired, his three sons, as well as his three grandsons, Samuel Robert, Liam Michael, and Noah David. In the 1980s and early 1990s, he coached basketball and baseball on his sons' teams for the Enfield Little League and Cub Scouts League, which was a great joy to him. He was a dedicated Red Sox fan, enjoying "America's favorite pastime" until the last night of his life, part of which he spent watching the World Series on the eve of Halloween. Living sober for the last 38 years of his life, Michael was a longtime friend of Bill W. He was proud of the support he received and gave to others in recovery.

A man of few, if any, regrets, known to almost never complain, when mobility became a challenge for him, Mike occasionally expressed how he had loved the part of his life when he was an active basketball player, cross country runner, and fisherman. Some of his happiest moments were spent enjoying fishing on the sandy banks and in the persistent flow of the Connecticut River, near his childhood home on the border of Enfield and Suffield.

Mike was also a lover of the arts, encouraging his adult sons with their respective careers in music and theater. He was a fan of many of the great musical artists of his era, including his favorites Bob Dylan, Neil Young, Judy Collins, and Mary Travers. A bibliophile and voracious reader, Michael took great pleasure in making his way through hundreds of books during his lifetime, including the children's literature he read to his boys and the detective novels that entertained him. He loved many film genres, especially admiring the cinematic performances of actresses Katherine Hepburn and Meryl Streep, themselves products of the Nutmeg State. His close family including his sons, sister, and grandsons will recall fondly how he would often become moved by great music, acting, or poetry, with a twinkle in his bright blue eyes, often expressing his admiration for the talents of others, laugh-sobbing through the phrase, "It's (s/he's) so good!"

Michael is survived by his brother and sister; brother-in-law Stephen Goddard; sons; daughters-in-law Stacy Gauthier Blaney and Hannah Rashaw Blaney; son-in-law Laurence Re; and grandsons. In the last years of his life, he often said that it was his love for his three grandsons that kept him going. He loved his family dearly, including his nieces and nephews, who will all remember him fondly as "Uncle Mike." Michael lived independently for the last four years of his life at Ojakian Commons in Simsbury, quietly and bravely battling two neurological diseases, multiple sclerosis, and Parkinson's disease, retaining his independence until his very last days. His family is grateful for the support and community of friends he found there. A free thinker who loved debate, Michael was a self-effacingly professed Luddite who yet strongly believed in the value of scientific research.

His family requests memorial donations to be sent to the Connecticut chapter of the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Donations can be sent to the Michael Blaney Memorial Fund at

https://secure.national

mssociety.org
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Lynn Clarkin

Posted at 04:18pm
To all of Mike's family, You all have my deepest condolence on the loss of such a wonderful guy. I went to school with Michael and he was so liked by all and will be missed. Please know you are in my thoughts and prayers. Lynn (Patrevita) Clarkin
TF

The Moriarty Family

Posted at 08:53pm
With deep sorrow of your loss. Fond memories of wonderful Enfield neighbors. It was very special to know your beautiful family. Love, Moriarty Family
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John Mayo

Posted at 01:44pm
Jeff,

Sorry to hear about your Dad. He was a good man. John Mayo
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