Cover photo for John J. Costello Jr.'s Obituary
John J. Costello Jr. Profile Photo
1938 Jack 2024

John J. Costello Jr.

September 12, 1938 — May 26, 2024


It is with great sadness that the family of John Joseph Costello Jr., known to all as Jack, announce his passing on Sunday, May 26, 2024, at the age of 85.

Jack was born on September 12, 1938, to John Joseph Costello Sr. and Louise Helena (Aquino) Costello in Calais, Maine. After graduating in 1957 from Woodland High School, Jack continued his studies, earning an associate degree in mechanics from Southern Maine Vocational.


Throughout his life, Jack was known for his drive and exceptional work ethic. He believed strongly in providing one’s best, which he demonstrated not only in his personal life but also throughout his 42 years of service with Woodland Pulp and Paper Mill. His dedication to his work was unparalleled, and his creative mechanical and fabrication skills delivered significant value to the company. Whether applied to his mill positions or his external jobs, Jack's ingenuity and resourcefulness were evident in every task he undertook.


If there had been a way to incorporate more hours in a day, they would not have been lost on him. Jack was known to pour his heart and soul into his work, and the gratification he felt from his accomplishments fueled his energy and spirit. His commitment to excellence inspired those around him and left a lasting impact on his colleagues and community.


Jack's passion for cars and motorcycles was evident throughout his life. From a young age, he was obsessed with rebuilding hot rods and bikes. No different than his later years, Jack enjoyed the game of negotiating trades with his various collections, finding joy in the thrill of the deal and the camaraderie of fellow enthusiasts.  


Like his father and sister, Jack also shared a deep love for music, which he expressed through his soft mellow voice and various instruments.   He played trumpet and drums in his high school band, which earned them a trip to Washington DC during the cherry blossom festival.   The instrument that he favorited most was his guitar. Whether it was a quiet Sunday afternoon or with a group of his guitar buddies, the opportunity to sing and play remained important throughout his years.


Jack was predeceased by his father, John Joseph Costello Sr., mother Louise Helena Costello, sister Rose Marie Vaznis, and brothers-in-law, Larry Vaznis and Ted Kahler. He is survived by his wife of 67 years, Nancy (Gagner) Costello, and his three children: John Joseph Costello III and husband Thomas Lecakis of Rockland, Maine, Deborah Costello Feck and husband Ralph of Alexander, Maine, David Armand Costello and wife Kayla of Baileyville, Maine.  Jack is also survived by 7 grandchildren: John (Joey) Joseph Costello IV, Aimee Shellhamer and husband Kenny, Nanci Smith and husband Brian, Danielle Theberge and husband Jeff, Kristina Robinson and husband Josh, Hunter Costello, and Khloe Leighton. In addition, he leaves behind 10 great-grandchildren: Michaela Costello, Ella Costello, Violet Shellhamer, Vivian Shellhamer, Maddux Smith, Zoe Smith, Camden Smith, Sawyer Theberge, Hudson Theberge, and Jack Robinson; brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, Robert and Bonnie Gagner, Tim Gagner, and Natalie Gagner; and many nieces and nephews.


A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at St. James the Greater Church, 60 Summit St., Baileyville, 10 a.m. Saturday, June 1, 2024, followed by a graveside burial at the Woodland Cemetery.  A time of fellowship will be held after the burial at the home of Ralph and Debbie Feck, 94 Chase Brook Rd., Alexander.  In place of flowers, donations to Alzheimer’s Association, PO Box 96011, Washington, DC  20090-6011, ( would be greatly appreciated.  Arrangements by Mays Funeral Home, Calais & Eastport.   Condolences and memories may be shared at


In the hearts of those who knew him, Jack's memory will forever shine brightly, a testament to a life well-lived and deeply cherished. His legacy of hard work, love, and laughter will continue to inspire us all. May he rest in peace, knowing that he was loved beyond measure and will be dearly missed by all who had the privilege of knowing him.

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John J. Costello Jr., please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

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Saturday, June 1, 2024

Starts at 10:00 am (Eastern time)

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