James V. Carelli Jr.

James V. Carelli Jr., 66, of Holbrook, the first total artificial heart recipient in New England, died unexpectedly Oct. 12, 2012, at Brigham and Womens Hospital, surrounded by his loving family. Mr. Carelli, had received a transplanted heart earlier in the week but experienced complications due to the surgery. Mr. Carelli was born in Boston and grew up in Holbrook where he was a 1964 graduate of Holbrook High School. He graduated from Boston University with a degree in Science and Education. A science teacher and coach for more than thirty years, he retired from the Braintree Public Schools in 2004. Mr. Carelli enjoyed traveling with his wife, Jane, working on his home, reading history, and watching sports. He lived a rigorous life-style before becoming ill. His retirement activities were curtailed when he developed Cardiac Amyloidosis, a disease that destroyed his heart. With transplant being the only option, Mr. Carelli lived at the Brigham for the past eight months. He was introduced to the public at a news conference on June 21, at which his difficult situation and history-making procedure were revealed. Despite his lengthy stay, Mr. Carelli remained optimistic and received daily encouragement from the wonderful staff on 6 Shapiro. His family is extremely grateful that his wife was able to live there with him. He was greatly loved and will be greatly missed. Mr. Carelli is survived by his beloved wife Jane (Gallagher) Carelli; his mother Lucy R. (Gervasi) Carelli, both of Holbrook; his two sisters, Sandra Batstone of Holbrook, and Kathleen Carelli of Avon; his two nieces, LuciAnn Losordo of Hanover, and LoriAnn Kelleher of Bridgewater; and five grandnieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his father, James V Carelli, Sr. He also had an extended family of friends.