Folsom Funeral Service

Melvin, Lt. Col. (Ret.) Michael A.


Lieutenant Colonel (Retired) Michael A. Melvin, U.S. Air Force, died on July 21, 2018 after a long illness. He was 86 years old.

Mike was born in Lawrence, Massachusetts on March 31, 1932 to Pauline and Edward Melvin.  He grew up in Methuen, where he played Football in High School and enlisted in the US Air Force in 1952.  He served three years as a Radar Operator before earning his commission as a Second Lieutenant on March 4, 1955.  Mike served in various roles during his Air Force career beginning as a Weapons Officer in the 57th Fighter Interceptor Squadron, “The Black Knights of Keflavik,” to his final assignment as Master Navigator and Commanding Officer of the 709th Military Airlift Squadron at Dover Air Force Base, Delaware.  A true Patriot, Mike served 30 years and 7 months in the US Air Force, defending the Constitution through the Vietnam Era and the Cold War.

While Mike loved the Air Force, he loved God and his family even more.  An active member of St Mary’s of the Assumption Catholic Parrish in Dedham, Mike served in the Choir, and loved religious and classical music, so much so that Sundays at the Melvin House were dedicated to attending Mass, classical music and intellectual reading pursuits.

Mike attended Merrimac College where he met his beloved wife, Joan Marie Echteler, whom he married on March 12, 1955.  They have been married for over 63 years and have six wonderful children, Patricia, Michael, Clare Hughes, John, Katie Fitzsimmons, and Deirdre.  Mike was always welcoming of his children’s friends, like Brian Falvey, whom he considered family.

As wonderful as Mike was as a father, he was an even more accomplished grandfather.  He has six grandchildren that he loved deeply, including Erik Melvin, Scotty Hughes, Michael Melvin, Shannon Hughes, Patrick Melvin and his beloved granddaughter Samantha Melvin.  He was a gracious and loving father-in-law to Maria Serio-Melvin and Christopher Sean Hughes.  Mike also loved Loretta and Brian Herman who raised his wonderful grandson Erik.

Mike is also survived by his sister, Joanne Lambdin, of Las Vegas, Nevada.

Mike set the example for his family’s service to the Nation.  His son John and three of his grandsons serve in the US Army, and his daughter Clare has spent many years in Government Service.

After retirement from the Air Force, Mike taught Electrical Engineering Technology and Computer Science at Massasoit Community College, where he challenged his students to reach for excellence in all they do.  Mike was a fashion trendsetter, combining shorts, red suspenders, socks and sandals, and a pocket protector for a unique look.  He was a great do-it-your-selfer, as he started many home improvement projects.  A plant lover, Mike was an avid horticultural hobbyist.  He loved tinkering and fixing things and was an accomplished backyard auto mechanic.  A talented cook, his favorite culinary creations included linguine and clam sauce and beef bourguignon.  Mike enjoyed visiting with family, talking politics, listening to classical music, and watching British Television on PBS.  He had a positive impact on his family, his friends, and his students, making the world a better place. Mike will be greatly missed.

Visiting hours will be held Thursday, August 9th from 4-8 pm at the Folsom Funeral Home, 87 Milton St., Dedham. Relatives and friends are invited to go directly to St. Mary’s Church, 420 High St., Dedham for his Mass of Christian Burial on Friday, August 10th at 9 o’clock. Interment with military honors will take place at 12:30 pm at the MA National Cemetery, Bourne. In lieu of flowers, please send donations in Mike’s honor to the Fisher House Foundation at  The Fisher House Foundation provides lodging near Military and Veterans Administration Hospitals, where military and veterans’ families can stay at no cost while their loved ones are receiving treatment.


Guestbook Entries

  1. Loretta Herman
    August 5th, 2018 | 7:44 am

    Love you, Papa. Thank you for everything.

  2. Maria Melvin
    August 5th, 2018 | 9:02 pm

    Mike will be greatly missed.

  3. Patrick Anthony Melvin
    August 5th, 2018 | 9:13 pm

    I love you grandpa

  4. Michael Melvin
    August 5th, 2018 | 9:22 pm

    You will be missed. Love you Papa

  5. Samantha Melvin
    August 5th, 2018 | 9:25 pm

    I will miss u grandpa, love you.

  6. Sara Serio
    August 5th, 2018 | 9:27 pm

    My deepest condolences to the Melvin family. I had the privilege of spending time cooking with him at John and Maria’s home in San Antonio. I especially enjoyed making his linguine and clam sauce. He truly was a wonderful man.

  7. August 5th, 2018 | 10:08 pm

    May perpetual light sign upon Mike’s soul.

  8. Andrea Serio
    August 5th, 2018 | 10:56 pm

    May Mike Rest In Peace.

  9. Sarah Shingleton
    August 5th, 2018 | 11:33 pm

    My condolences for your loss. He must have been such a joy to know.

  10. August 6th, 2018 | 2:17 pm

    Thank you for your service, Mike. Rest In Peace. God Bless you and your family.

  11. Delores Ramirez
    August 8th, 2018 | 2:16 am

    John, Maria and kids, so sorry to hear about your dad-grandpa . I met big Mike once I really enjoyed talking with him. Hi Erik,sorry about your grand-dad

  12. Robet Monnier
    August 8th, 2018 | 11:04 pm

    Dear John, Maria, Michael, Patrick, and Samantha,
    We can’t think of any words that would comfort your loss but, our thoughts and prayers are with you. Love, Bob, Sara, Marsella, Morgan, Mia, and Mackenzie Monnier

  13. Kris Chafin
    August 10th, 2018 | 2:05 pm

    To John, Maria, Michael, Patrick and Samantha,
    My heart goes out to you for the loss of your father and grandfather. What a wonderful God and country loving, and family loving soul. He is now at rest and smiling looking at all of you, so proud of all of you.

  14. John Dias
    August 11th, 2018 | 11:55 am

    Our most sincere regrets to the entire family from New England natives who have made Texas home for the past 50 years, and attend Our Lady of Perpetual Help with Maria. A military veteran who truly appreciates the value of Mike’s service. Thank you, Sir.

  15. Vanessa Marie Lambdin
    September 19th, 2018 | 7:41 pm

    I wish to express my sympathy for my uncle Michael’s family and loved ones and friends, and regret that we had hardly any contact over our lifetimes due to geography. Mom saw her brother last several years ago when they both happened to be visiting people in Florida, including their Methuen childhood playmates, their maternal cousins. My mother dearly loved both of her brothers, Michael the elder and Gregory the younger, and has rich memories of their childhood, many of which she has depicted in fine art and writings. Today is her birthday, Sept 19, and this is when I found this touching obituary… She was very proud of her brother Mike, who enjoyed an exalted status in our considerations all of our lives. Mom is deeply saddened, and had hoped to come see her brother this very October.

    Their younger brother, Greg, lived with our family, along with their father, Edward Melvin, from about 1968, til Grandpa passed from natural causes in November 1979, and Greg until he passed away just a few years ago: both were beloved fixtures in our lives. My mother now lives in Reno, Nevada (never Las Vegas), and previously in southern California.

    I only met my uncle Mike and aunt Joan and cousins, Michael, Patty and Clare, once that I remember, during a short stay in Massachusetts and New Hampshire in about 1964. Our family lived in Seattle before that, except for 1957, as I was born in Methuen, Massachusetts July 1957. My parents and two older brothers had gone to be near Mom and Uncle Michael’s mother, Pauline (ne Apolonia Marie Zebrowska) Melvin, as she was terminally ill. She passed away six months before I was born, and we moved back to Seattle where my four younger brothers were born. Our younger sister was born in Southern California where we all lived for decades.

    I named my only child, my natural daughter who arrived when I was 41, for my maternal grandmother, Apolonia Marie, or Pauline, as she was known, as she came to me in my pregnant dreams.

    We are connected, and we feel the loss of our uncle, a man we knew in heroic status in our mother’s eyes, and now grieving heart.
    May he rest in peace.

    Vanessa Marie Lambdin

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