Obituaries: Hildred Parent, Paul Riggs, and Mary Lou Walsh

We are sad to report the deaths of notable Hull residents: Hildred Parent, Paul Riggs, and Mary Lou Walsh. Their obituaries follow:

Hildred A. Parent, at 88
Hildred A. [Beatey] Parent of Sherwood, Oregon, formerly of Hull, died Monday, Jan. 25, at the age of 88.

Mrs. Parent worked many years for the town of Hull as the recording secretary to the board of selectmen, the Hull Redevelopment Authority, board of appeals, conservation commission, and planning board. She also served on many other committees for the town and was particularly knowledgeable about local zoning and bylaws. 

Beloved wife of the late Edward D. Parent Sr., she is survived by her son, Edward Parent Jr., and his wife, Linda, of Hull and Port Charlotte, Florida. The cherished grandmother of Edward Parent III of Plymouth, Jessica Reis of Middleboro, and Jennifer Hession of Hull and great grandmother of Victoria, Jacob, Olivia, Michael, and Matthew; Mrs. Parent also is survived by her brother, Robert W. Beatey of Oregon; her cousin, Barbara Gorham of Weymouth; and many nieces and nephews. She also leaves many friends and colleagues and countless Hull residents whom she helped at town hall over the decades.

Visiting hours will be held at the Downing Cottage Funeral Chapel, 21 Pond St., Hingham on Monday, Feb. 8, from 3 to 7 p.m. Relatives and friends are respectfully invited to attend. 
A graveside service will be held at Hull Village Cemetery on Tuesday, Feb. 9 at noon, with a celebration of life reception to follow. 

For additional information and online condolences,

Wilfred ‘Paul’ Riggs Jr., at 93
Wilfred “Paul” Riggs Jr. of Hull died peacefully on Jan. 21. He was surrounded by his family, along with his wife, Lorraine Varney Riggs, and the compassionate, expert staff at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston. He was 93.

In November, Mr. Riggs was one of only seven surviving World War II veterans in Hull. Honored at the town’s Veterans’ Day observance, Mr. Riggs was recognized for his service in the Army Air Corps in World War II, as well as for piloting a P-51 “Mustang” fighter plane in both World War II and Korea. 

In Korea, he flew exactly 100 reconnaissance missions as a member of the 45th Tactical “Polka Dot” Squadron. The men in their unit proudly sported helmets and scarves with their signature polka dots. 

During his military service, Mr. Riggs rose to the rank of first lieutenant, earning the following honors: the World War II American Theatre Ribbon, the World War II Victory Medal, the Korean Service Medal, the United Nations Service Medal, and the Distinguished Flying Cross.
Throughout his life, his family took pleasure listening to his stories of his military flying adventures. One particularly harrowing incident occurred when the instruments of his airplane suddenly stopped working, forcing him to navigate a safe landing through a thick fog, guided only by the lights of the Cape Cod Railroad Bridge. In Korea, he executed a difficult landing, setting his plane down safely in a rice paddy. 

Mr. Riggs was born in Trenton, NJ to the Rev. Wilfrid P. Riggs Sr. and Pauline Swisher Riggs. He studied at Park College in Missouri and graduated from Columbia Business School in New York. A dedicated entrepreneur and amiable businessman, Mr. Riggs was an award-winning salesman for the Brandt Company in New York City. Later, he founded his own company, Clean Air of New England, in which he sold and installed air purifying systems.

In 1974, he moved to Manchester, NH, where he lived for 28 years before relocating with Lorraine to Hull. He was an active member of both the Unitarian Universalist Church of Manchester, NH and, after moving to Massachusetts, joined the Old Ship Church in Hingham. 
Mr. Riggs had an ever-expanding dedication to social justice, as evidenced in his support for Veterans for Peace, PFLAG, and Sustainable South Shore. He remained involved in politics, economics, and world affairs.

Along with his wife, he held a deep love of music, singing tenor with the New Hampshire Symphony Chorus, Manchester Pro-Musica, and other choral groups. He loved to sail at his camp on Loon Pond in New Hampshire, as well as build and fly kites with the younger members of his family.

Father of four children with Phyllis Pitt Riggs, he is the parent of and is survived by Elsbeth Weller and her husband, David, of Arizona, Paul David Riggs and his wife, Sharon, of Hooksett, NH, Victoria Riggs Selleck and her spouse, Jill Selleck, of Shelburne Falls, and Catherine Joy Flemming and her husband, David, of Peterborough, NH.

Mr. Riggs is also survived by his sister, Mary Wells, of New Jersey; his stepchildren, Dean J. Varney and wife, Erin DeCurtis, of Boston, and Alexandra Varney McDonald and her husband, Michael, of Hull. He was the loving grandfather of 11 grandchildren: Dawn, Kate, David, Jeremy, Emily, Cleo, Richard, Clay, Maxwell, Nicholas and Meghan. He also leaves seven great grandchildren, as well as a niece and nephews. He was pre-deceased by three siblings, Janet Kassell, Stanley Riggs, and David Walker Riggs. 

Arrangements are being handled by The Cremation Society of New Hampshire. A celebration of Paul’s life with military honors will be held at 2 p.m. on April 9 at the Old Ship Church, 90 Main St. in Hingham.

Memorial donations may be made to:

• Unitarian Universalist Service Committee (, 689 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02139;
• Unitarian Universalist Church of Manchester, NH Youth Program, 669 Union St., Manchester, NH 03104; or
• Old Ship Youth Group for Social Action, 107 Main St., Hingham, MA 02043.

Mary Lou Walsh, at 78
Mary Lou [McDonald Slattery] Walsh, of Hull and Carriacou, Grenada, died Jan. 27, at the Pat Roche Hospice Home in Hingham. She was 78.

Mrs. Walsh loved to travel and was a lifetime member of Hull Yacht Club.

She is survived by her four children and three stepchildren: John (Dru) Slattery of Marblehead, Robert (Susan) Slattery of Marblehead and Minneapolis, Susan (Michael) Ribeiro of Hull, William Slattery of Ogunquit, ME, Jeffrey Walsh of Beverly, Richard Walsh of Attleboro, and Alison (Arlin) Sebastian of Beverly. She also leaves 11 grandchildren, many nieces and nephews, and many dear friends. 

She was predeceased by husbands Donald Slattery and Richard Walsh; and one grandson, Brendan Walsh. She was the devoted sister of Donald “Stan” McDonald and his wife, Joanne, of Florida, the late Kathleen Nash of Hingham and Maine, John McDonald and his wife, Judith, of Hull and Texas, Dorothea Rogers and her husband, James, of Florida, and the late Daniel McDonald of Oklahoma. 

A memorial service will be held in the spring.

Memorial donations may be made to Sail Nantasket, PO Box 200, Hull, MA 02045, or Norwell VNA, 120 Longwater Dr., Norwell, MA 02061.
For additional information and online condolences, please