Cover photo for Kathleen O'Brien's Obituary
Kathleen O'Brien Profile Photo
1956 Kathy 2023

Kathleen O'Brien

December 17, 1956 — June 19, 2023



ASHBURNHAM – Kathleen “Kathy” (Maki) O’Brien, 66, of Ashburnham, died suddenly Monday, June 19, 2023 at UMASS Memorial Hospital, Worcester from injuries sustained in a motor vehicle accident.

A lifelong resident of Ashburnham, Kathy graduated from Oakmont Regional High School, Class of 1974.

Kathy was a loyal, treasured employee of Gardner Savings bank, IC Federal Credit Union, Roy Brothers Oil, retiring last year from Wyson Trucking.

A beautiful soul, kind and generous to a fault, she touched and brightened the world of everyone she knew.  She loved the beach, mystery novels, and all things Harley Davidson.  She was a loving mother, aunt, sister and friend.  It wasn’t uncommon to find a little something left behind, a small token of her love and encouragement.  Known for her marathon cooking to provide hot and delicious food at the Hawg Hawlers frequent events, or for family parties, needy friends or for someone she thought it would help, she did this all without being asked, and wouldn’t take No for an answer.  Credit? She wouldn’t hear of it.

Kathy is survived by her loving son, Shawn Janssens of Ashburnham; sister Laura (Lystila) Blanchard and husband Pete of Fitchburg; her brothers, John Maki and wife Debbie of Portsmouth, NH and Matthew Sullivan and wife Kate of Upatol, GA; doting aunt to her nieces Jessica Blanchard of Westminster, Tessa Maki of Portsmouth, NH and Kristin (Maki) Fritz and husband Brian of Stratham, NH and Kendall Sullivan of Oxford, CT; stepsister Lisa Blanchard and husband Thomas of Ashby, MA.

Kathy was predeceased by her beloved husband James O’Brien, mother Beverly (Waid) Sullivan; father Richard Maki and treasured stepfather Francis “Greg” O’Sullivan and stepsister, Linda Lee Williams as well as her brother, Daniel "Danny" Richard Maki.

The friends, she left behind are too numerous to list in its entirety by Kathy would insist on recognizing longtime friends, Sue Lahtinen of Ashburnham and Junior and Pauline Lashua of Ashburnham.  Her life was filled with love from her family; those who called her “Mama”: Eric and Jenn Casey of Phillipston, Jake Strait of Gardner, Brenda and Ratt Rushford of Winchendon and Bob Marsh and Deb Lawn of Hubbardston.

Calling hours in Stone-Ladeau Funeral Home, 343 Central Street, Winchendon are Monday, June 26, 2023 from 5 to 7 P.M.

A Celebration of Life will be held July 28, 2023 at 4 PM at the Otter River Sportsmans Club, Otter River.

Memorial donations may be made to Montachusett Veterans Outreach Center, 268 Central Street, Gardner, MA 01440.

To leave an online condolence, please visit

Kevin J. Mack, Walter C. Taylor, Melissa McQuaid and Douglas M. Stone, directors


To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Kathleen O'Brien, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services


Monday, June 26, 2023

5:00 - 7:00 pm (Eastern time)

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Celebration of Life

Friday, July 28, 2023

4:00 - 10:00 pm (Eastern time)

Otter River Sportsman's Club

250 Lord Rd, Templeton, MA 01436

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