Margaret Klessens, a World War II Army veteran and resident of Somerville, Massachusetts was chosen as the Chief Marshal of the Bunker Hill Day Parade 2022. Margaret is currently a member of the American Legion, the DAV, and the Charlestown School Girls Association.
The parade will take place on June 12th, Sunday, 2022 in Charlestown Massachusetts proceeding up Bunker Hill Street, making the curve around to Main Street at the Schrafft’s Building. The parade proceeds up Main Street then left at Monument Ave passing by the Bunker Hill Monument, ending at the training field on Winthrop Street where the reviewing stand will be located.
Margaret Tiernan Klessens was born and raised in Charlestown, Massachusetts prior to the Great Depression and just after WWI. The Prohibition Era was in it’s prime. She attended and graduated from local schools, Saint Mary’s grammar School, the Clarence R. Edwards Middle School where she won the school’s Spelling Bee in 1939 and finally Charlestown High School. Her mother Sarah raised five children by herself after losing her husband William Tiernan when Margaret was 4 years old. Margaret’s dad served in the United States Army in Mexico hunting Pancho Villa and in France during World War I and after in the Army of Occupation, coming home only to succumb to complications due to mustard gas poisoning. This traumatic event obviously left quite a mark on Margaret and her entire family including her brother William Tiernan who served during World War II in the United States Air Force in England flying sorties over Western Europe. Margaret herself enlisted during World War II in the United States Army and did her basic training at Fort Oglethorpe, Georgia. During these years Margaret worked as an electrician’s helper and in the Supply Department for the United States Navy where she met her husband William C. Klessens who served in the United States Navy during World War II and Korea and subsequently in civilian capacity during the Vietnam War. Margaret retired from the Department of the United States Navy after working years in the Charlestown Navy Yard performing classified and confidential work in a secured office. She later worked for the State of Massachusetts in Personnel Administration and retired from the state in 1994 after the passing of her beloved husband William. Margaret had four children, William, Cornelius (Neil), Thomas and Sally. She moved to Somerville in 1962 with her husband and four children. Her extended family currently includes two daughters-in-law Donna (Neil) and Jean (Tom), four grandchildren Michael, Christopher, Amanda (Robbie Waters)and Kate (Michael Szablak) and one great-grandchild Jacob Thomas Szablak. We also have a close family friend Manuel De Costa who we often refer to as Margaret’s son by another mother or our brother by another mother. Her family are all very proud of their mother’s accomplishments and achievements in her life and are quite honored that she was chosen as the Chief Marshal of the Bunker Hill Day Parade this year. We are all truly grateful, as is Margaret, for your kindness, consideration, and efforts to bring this to fruition in 2022 after 2 years of cancellation of the parade due to covid.