Lorraine Mae (Donahue) Galler was born on May 11, 1932 in Worcester, Massachusetts into an Irish/Swedish household headed by parents John Francis Donahue and Signey Amelia Quist and joining two sisters, Barbara Donahue and Marjorie Donahue Gallagher where she grew up in a predominately Swedish neighborhood, surrounded by aunts, uncles and cousins.
After graduating from Worcester South High School in June of 1950, she chose the unconventional path of music and singing against the wishes of her mother, who hoped that she would follow her sisters into nursing or become a school teacher. Perhaps it was her jovial father’s tales of the Vaudeville circuit or her own sense of wanderlust and desire for glamour that lead her to Boston to pursue a career in music. While studying at the New England Conservatory of Music and taking private voice lessons, she supported herself by singing in church and civic venues and in theatre productions of Show Boat, Carousel and Anything Goes on Cape Cod and the Music Circus in Cohasset, MA.
In 1954 she moved to New York City where she auditioned for and won the Arthur Godfrey Talent Scouts. Arthur Godfrey was instrumental in discovering and cultivating new talent. She then went on to appear on his weekly variety program as well as a 13 week stint on WBZ’s Best of Broadway program. Later that year she met and married a young Marine Corp Lieutenant, Albert Galler, and set up housekeeping in New York. After her appearance with Arthur Godfrey, Lorraine was selected to join the cast of a popular weekly television program, the Voice of Firestone. Robert Merrill and Risë Stevens of the Metropolitan were among a few of the weekly guest hosts.
When not in production for the program, Lorraine was the lone female voice in a musical quartet, The Knickerbockers, which toured the midwest and southern college and club circuit, before retiring in 1958 to raise a family.
Her last foray into music was in 1983 as a member of the New England Conservatory Alumni Choir which performed with the Boston Pops during its annual Christmas concert under the direction of John Williams.
She will be remembered as a hostess whose warmth and graciousness made her guests feel like royalty. She was tireless and cheerful in the care she gave to her husband and family. She put the same love and patience into everything she gave her attention, from Brownie and Cub scout leader, CCD teacher to Easter Seals Ambassador. She gave the same care to the food donations she prepared for the Pine Street Inn as she did her own holiday table. She was a lover of history, literature, knitting, crocheting, travel, cooking, decorating and gardening.
Lorraine joins her late husband, Albert G. Galler, (1925-2017), and leaves behind three children, Walter Galler, Dwight Galler, Susan O’Brien and nine grandchildren, Duncan, Andrew, Olivia, Isabella, Jake, Samantha, Troy, Scott and Katherine; along with nieces and nephews Pat Gallagher, Barbara Stevens, John Gallagher and Joseph Gallagher.
Family and friends are invited to celebrate Lorraine on Nov. 15, 2018 during a visiting hours at 9 am in McNamara-Sparrell Funeral Home, 160 So. Main St. (across from St Anthony Church), Cohasset followed immediately by a Mass of Christian Burial at 10 am in St. Anthony Church, Cohasset. Interment at the Massachusetts National Cemetery, Bourne, MA. on Friday, Nov. 16, 2018 at 11:15 am.