Alan Townsend Campbell, age 71, died on October 25, 2010 at Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston.
Alan was born and raised in Melrose. He attended Melrose schools, graduating from Melrose High School in 1957. He had such fond memories of growing up in Melrose. He had so many friends, many with whom he kept in close contact throughout his life. Immediately after graduation from high school, Alan joined the United States Marine Corps.
Upon his discharge from the Marine Corps he had no definite plans for the future. He credited a very special group of high school friends for recognizing his potential and encouraging him to attend college, which of course he did. Thanks to them, he embarked on a successful and rewarding career in education.
Alan attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where he earned his undergraduate degree and master’s degree in history. His teaching career began at the Audubon Junior High School in Los Angeles, Calif., from 1966 to 1968. In 1968 he returned to the East Coast to complete his master’s degree.
While attending classes and working on his thesis he taught history at Belchertown High School. He remained in Belchertown from 1968 to 1972. While at BHS he coached baseball and served as president of the Belchertown Teachers Association. During those years he made many friends and inspired many students.
In the summer of 1972 Alan and his wife Connie moved to Martha’s Vineyard where he assumed the position of Assistant Principal of the Tisbury School. He was appointed Principal in 1976 and remained in that post until his retirement in 1998.
Oh, how Alan loved the Tisbury School. The Tisbury School faculty and staff were like family to him. He had such respect for them and took such pride in all of their accomplishments. It was through their diligent work and dedication that brought the Tisbury School National recognition in1996. They were the first school on the Island to be awarded a National Blue Ribbon for Excellence. Alan was also very proud of being a part of the construction of the addition to the school which consists of the library, science classrooms, and kindergarten.
Alan truly loved his students. After they graduated from Tisbury School, he followed their progress at the regional high school. He made sure he congratulated them for all of their accomplishments, whether for academics or athletics. He made sure they received a personal phone call or a hand-written letter. After his retirement, he continued to hold the Tisbury School community very dear to his heart.
When he retired from education, Alan worked part-time doing house inspections for both Martha’s Vineyard Insurance and US Underwriters — a job he enjoyed, and he often boasted about the thousands of houses he had inspected on the Island. Whatever job Alan had throughout his life, big or small, he did with enthusiasm and excellence.
Alan was such a great guy — a funny, intelligent, honest, straight-forward, dependable, loyal family man. Alan truly loved his family.
He is survived by his loving wife, Cornelia Hollinger Campbell, his daughters Joanne Campbell Cannistraro and her husband, Michael, of Waltham; Katie Campbell Milo and her husband, TJ, of New York City. His son Peter Campbell and his wife, Jessica, of Vineyard Haven. His grandchildren that he adored: Joel, Michael and Arianna Cannistraro of Waltham and Jed Morgan Campbell of Vineyard Haven.
The family requests that any donations be given to Angel Flight Northeast. Because of them, his treatments actually turned out to be a pleasant experience.