In Memory of





Obituary for Barbara P. Renison (Polo)

Barbara P. (Polo) Renison, a longtime resident of Chelmsford, passed away peacefully at the age of 88 in her home on Friday, January 19, 2024, surrounded by her loving family. She was the beloved wife of the late Ralph B. Hickey with whom she enjoyed 16 years of marriage until his passing in 2017.

She was born in Long Island City, NY on December 7, 1935, and was the daughter of the late Vincent M. and Violet E. (Lewis) Polo.

Barbara grew up in Wellesley and settled in Chelmsford to raise her family. She was the proud owner and operator of Soniren Shepherds where she bred and trained German Shepherds for many decades. Barbara was very generous with her time and resources having volunteered for many organizations including Friends of the Chelmsford Library, Habitat for Humanity, Friends of the Chelmsford Senior Center where she was the activities director for fifteen years, St. Mary Parish Ministry for the elderly and shut-ins, the Paul Center, the German Shepherd Rescue of New England, and she served on the Board of Directors of the Lowell Humane Society. Every month Barbara baked cupcakes for homeless shelters and took great pride in elaborately decorating them so the residents would have something special. Each Christmas, she coordinated a clothing drive for Veterans’ groups. In 2005, she organized and ran a Katrina Hurricane Disaster Relief which provided a trailer truck full of food, clothing, toiletries, and necessities. In 2010, Barbara was honored as the Chelmsford Person of the Year. Most important of all, she cherished the time she spent with her family, especially sharing summer beach vacations in Manomet.

Barbara is survived by two of her daughters, Susan Elizabeth Renison and her husband Rob Milby of Santa Cruz, CA, and Mary Anne Pellegrini and her husband Angelo of Pittsfield; her grandchildren, Kassandra Violet Spiller and her partner Ricky Hoffer of Durham, NC, and Michael Alan Spiller of Chelmsford; her great grandson Cole Hoffer; and her brother Vincent Masters Polo, and his wife Amber of Camp Verde, AZ. She also leaves her Godson, Bobby Pyle and her dearest friend/like a sister, Karen McCall.

In addition to her husband, Barbara was predeceased by her daughter Diana Marie Renison and her children’s father William James Renison, Jr.

Visiting hours will be held on Tuesday, January 23, 2024 from 8:30am to 10:30am at the Blake Chelmsford Funeral Home, 24 Worthen St., Chelmsford. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated following the visitation at 11am at St. Mary Parish, 25 North Rd., Chelmsford. Interment in Woodlawn Cemetery, Acton. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Barbara’s memory to the Paul Center at 39 Concord Road, Chelmsford MA 01824.