Obituary: Robert A. Flynn (1928-2024)

Robert Augustine “Gus” Flynn, Sr. passed away peacefully on June 3, 2024 at St. Clare in Newport, RI. He was the husband of the late Virginia Anne Kiernan, to whom he was married for fifty-five years.

Born on July 15, 1928 in West Warwick, RI, Mr. Flynn was the son of John and Loretta (Sayles) Flynn. In 1950, he graduated from Providence College with a B.A. in business, later returning for his M.B.A and going on to teach there a popular course on business production.

Mr. Flynn served as a staff sergeant in the Korean War, winning a Purple Heart for his bravery. From 1954 to 1989, he worked for BIF Industries of West Warwick in a number of management roles until starting his own manufacturing company Oaklawn Products, which he closed in 2022.

In his spare time, Mr. Flynn used his talent as an outdoorsman to assist family, friends, and neighbors with gardening, mending stone walls, and even constructing treehouses for children. He took great joy in growing, cutting, and delivering his very own Christmas trees to those in need.

Mr. Flynn was renowned for his razor-sharp wit and his sly sense of humor, delighting everyone around him with stories, uproarious jokes, and perfectly timed one-liners. His affable, easy-going manner endeared him to everyone and his gift for finding the humor in any situation could light up a room.

Mr. Flynn was as humble as he was generous, living out the tenets of his Catholic faith and leading by example. He actively volunteered as a parishioner at Immaculate Conception in Cranston, while also belonging to the Bonnet Shores Beach Club as well as the University Club where he will be fondly remembered for his warm, welcoming presence.

Mr. Flynn is survived by his children – he was the father of Robert A. Flynn, Jr (Laure)., of East Greenwich, RI; John J. Flynn III (Mary) of Fredrick, MD; Mary M. Flynn of Narragansett, RI; and Martha Flynn Tasca (Thomas) of Newport, RI. He was a brother to William of West Warwick, RI and Edward of Glastonbury, CT, while being predeceased by John, Helen (Flanagan) and Thomas Flynn.

He was also the beloved “Grandpa Gus” to his four grandchildren: Meredith Flynn Cole (Zachary), Robert A. Flynn III (Maria), Peter Tasca, and James Tasca (Madeline). Mr. Flynn leaves behind his great-grandson, Cameron Cole, along with his many nieces and nephews.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, June 15, 2024 with visitation from 9:00-10:30 AM in the O’Neill-Hayes Funeral Home, 465 Spring St, Newport. A Mass of Christian burial will follow at 11:00 am, St. Mary’s Church, Newport. Burial will be private.

In lieu of flowers, please make donations in his memory to Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation for Childhood Cancer ( as well as the RI Community Food Bank (




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