Brendan O. Cleary
Cleary, 79, of Newbury Road, Ipswich, died on December 3, 2020, in his
home of a coronary related disease. He was the husband of the late Cynthia
J. (Cox) Cleary.
was born on September 2, 1941 in
Rochester, NY, son of the late George J. Cleary and Dorothy (Donovan)
Cleary. He was a proud graduate of Norwich University, Northfield, VT.
Following graduation, he served two years in the United States Army
with one of those years being assigned as a tank platoon leader with the
First Cavalry Division in Korea.
Following his military service, he coached football and taught
school in Montreal, Canada.
In 1968, he joined the FBI as a Special Agent serving first for thirteen
months in St. Petersburg, FL.
He was later transferred to Los Angeles, CA where he served for nine
years. While there, he met
and married his wife Cindy and enjoyed the birth of their daughter, Erin.
In 1978 he was transferred to the Boston Division where he served until
August 2001 when he reached the mandatory retirement age of 57.
Immediately following the events of September 11, 2001, he was
called back to service and served another year investigating the activity
of the 9/11 terrorists while they were in Boston and Maine on the days
prior to their fateful mission. Following his retirement in 2002, he
enjoyed working on his golf game at Amesbury Country Club, assisting for
two years in the construction of three homes in Ipswich for Habitat for
Humanity and five years delivering Meals on Wheels.
In 2003 he was inducted into the Norwich University Hall of Fame
for baseball and football and where he served on Norwich’s Board of
Fellows. While serving the FBI from 1968 to 2002, he received numerous
awards and commendations from many law enforcement entities.
He was most proud of his 1992 Paul Cavanaugh Award for outstanding
service to the Boston Division FBI.
In 1997 he received the prestigious Director’s Award for
Distinguished Service. He was
also proud of his participation in the FBI SWAT Teams in both Los Angeles
and Boston, serving in that capacity for over twenty years.
addition to his wife Cindy he was predeceased by his daughter Erin Cleary.
Brendan is survived by a brother, Brian Cleary of Lynn; a sister,
Michaela Cleary of Venice, FL; and two nieces, KC Cleary Comer of Rockland
and Shannon Ggem of Agoura, CA.
interment service with Military
Honors will be held at the Norwich University Cemetery at a later date.
Memorial contributions in his name may be made to Norwich University 1963
Scholarship Fund at
Arrangements are under the direction of the Whittier-Porter Funeral Home
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