When a husband and wife build volunteering into their lifestyle it can run a little bit away with them after awhile. Hank and Marie Boyle have spent over 50 years following each other into one community effort after the next, until today they are irreplaceable in the Goffstown fabric.
It all started with Gardner Lamson, who encouraged Hank to become the Water Commissioner. “C’mon over, he said,” laughs Hank. “It’s only one night a month. But then I found out, the newest guy in gets to go to the Budget Committee!” And from the Budget Committee Hank moved on to the Selectman’s office, where he served for 10 years. To date, Hank Boyle has served as Water Commissioner for twenty years, with no end in sight. “Someone’s gotta do it!”
“When I got out of the Selectman’s Office I had nothing to do, so I offered to be a Library Trustee,” explains Hank. Volunteering as a way of life has it’s perks. “Some of the responsibilities are fun, like being the conductor of the Polar Express.”
Some offices are more difficult than others. Boyle is currently serving as Chair of the Finance Committee for the School Board, a position not for the faint of heart. Once again, Hank keeps a positive outlook and a handle on his contribution. “I go, I listen, sometimes I make a suggestion.”
When asked about his many commitments, he replies, “How do I get into these things? I get volunteered!” That’s how Boyle’s wife, Marie, finds herself currently serving as the District School Clerk.
“We help each other,” Boyle says of his wife. “If she’s signed up we’ll go together and help each other.”
Marie Boyle has served on the GTV Committee, the American Legion Auxiliary, as secretary for the Goffstown Historical Society, and is currently Chair of the GHS Time Capsule Committee. Not surprisingly, she’s currently the Treasurer of the Water Precinct.
“Well, somebody has to do it, so I’ll do it,” says Marie. Hank has another explanation, “Someone needs something, they call Town Hall, and Town Hall sends them to Marie!”
Both Hank and Marie have been loyal Lions Club members for 24 years, and Marie dedicated sixteen years to the Lion’s Club Sight and Hearing Program. You’ll see them at the popcorn stand selling Christmas Trees, taking their turn three or four times a year. Marie was recently awarded the Lions For Life certificate, and exclaims, “Oh, that was wonderful!”
Every year Marie hosts the Goffstown Candidates Night, an event that allows all the candidates in all different races the opportunity to present themselves to the public. She’ll send out letters, arrange for the high school auditorium, and make sure there’s refreshments for the guests.
The couple were volunteering locally before some current residents were out of diapers. Hank is a Charter Member of the Goffstown Knights of Columbus, the Wesley Wyman Post, an original board member for the Goffstown Main Street Program, and he’s on the Southern NH Planning Committee. “That’s a lunch meeting, so you get a free meal!” Laughing is a great way to blur the fact that the couple is out at meetings dozens of nights a month.
And their efforts extended out to New Boston, where they served as judges for the July 4th Parade and Hank has pinch hit as Uncle Sam.
Once upon a time, back in 1961, the Boyles and 5 other couples founded the Goffstown Gaelic Society. For 25 years they organized the St. Patrick’s Day Dance that continues today thanks to the Goffstown Main Street Program. Hank and Marie Boyle have woven themselves into Goffstown in a way that ties the entire community together.
“We live right down town,” laughs Hank, as if that explains their dedication. Marie says about their life commitment, “We were lucky that we got so involved.”