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Edward J. Kulpa
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Obituary for Edward J. Kulpa

Palmer, Edward J. Kulpa, 88, slipped away quietly on November 26, 2017 at Wingate of Hampden with his loving family by his side. Born in Palmer, January 23, 1929, he was the son of the late Michael and Katherine (Armata) Kulpa. Edward attended Palmer Public Schools and resided in Palmer all of his life.

As a teen attending Palmer High School in the 1940’s, Ed was a tremendous athlete and a recipient of Shield Awards in both football and baseball. In football he was known as “Rocket Kulpa” for being one of the speediest backs as boasted by the Panther’s. For many years he had the fans in awe as he raced through the line as if propelled by rocket power. In an article as written by Nick Laviolette following a Palmer-Ware football game - “On the opening play of the second period Kulpa disappeared in the line of scrimmage, and when he was seen again he was trekking down the left side of the field pursued by three Ware backs, his run thrilling the crowd, which finally broke into a tumultuous ovation as Palmer scored.” (Palmer won the game 15-0).

Ed was also known for playing baseball “at a major league caliber”. In a newspaper article it was said that before Ed leaves high school his prowess will make him regarded as one of the most adept athletes in the past 27 years with stunning plays in the field and a batting average of .500. These accomplishments led to Ed being scouted by the Chicago Cubs Organization. Ed's choice was to stay in Palmer with his family and marry his high school sweetheart, Grace (Carlson). His professional working career began at CF&I and culminated as Head Cook at Monson Developmental Center, retiring after 20 years. He was a communicant of the former Sts. Peter & Paul Church (now Divine Mercy) and a member of St. Stan's Club.

Besides his parents, he was predeceased by the love of his life and wife of 58 years, Grace (Carlson) Kulpa (2009), along with his brothers Eugene, Augustine, and Stanley. Ed will be deeply missed by his three devoted daughters, Deborah Smola and her husband Richard, Laura Zoschak and her husband Michael, and Susan Roche and her husband Michael all of Palmer, along with his 7 loving and cherished grandchildren, Scott & Todd Smola, John, Andrea & Renee Zoschak and Connor & Monica Roche. He also leaves his 10 great-grandchildren Deven & Colby Zoschak, Derrick, Trevor, Gavin, TJ and Ciara Smola, Ryan and Nathan Loranger and Cassadee Michelin. Ed also leaves his loving sister, Irene Zagroski of Pawtucket, RI and many other loving family members and friends. The family wishes to thank his personal caregivers who took such loving care of him at home, as well as the nurses and staff of Wingate at Hampden for their tender and patient care of Ed during his time there.

A Funeral Mass will be Thursday, November 30 at 10:00 a.m. at Divine Mercy Church with burial to follow in Sts. Peter & Paul Cemetery. Calling hours will be Wednesday from 4:00 - 7:00 p.m. at the Beers & Story Palmer Funeral Home, 1475 N. Main. For those wishing, donations may be made to Divine Mercy, 2267 Main St, Three Rivers, 01080. For more information or to sign online guestbook, please visit

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Previous Events





4:00 PM - 7:00 PM
Beers and Story Funeral Homes - Palmer

1475 North Main St.
Palmer, MA 01069





10:00 AM
Divine Mercy

2267 Main St.
Three Rivers, MA 01080





11:15 AM
Sts Peter & Paul Cemetery

Fuller St.
Bondsville, MA 01009

Immediately following the funeral mass


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