Born December 7, 1939 in Camden, NJ, he was a son of Glen Moylan Cahilly and Ruth McDonough Cahilly. He was also the husband of Chyrl L. Boyd, whom he married on June 10, 2010 in Ulysses, PA.
Bruce believed strongly in the pursuit of lifelong learning. Unable to complete grade school due to family financial circumstances, he obtained his GED from the Woodrow Wilson Evening School in Camden, NJ. At the same time, Bruce worked for the New York Ship Building Corporation, where he obtained the level of 3rd Class Shipfitter during the construction of the U.S.S. Kitty Hawk CVA-63 aircraft supercarrier. He moved to Potter County in the late 1950s with his parents, and subsequently earned his Bachelor of Science Degree in Animal Husbandry Science at the Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University in 1963. During Bruce’s four years at Virginia Tech, he served in the Corps of Cadets, was a member of the Sash & Sabre Society, the College Journalism Board, the Pi Delta Epsilon fraternity, and the honorary agricultural society known as the Block & Bridle Club. Bruce went on to earn his Juris Doctor degree from the Dickinson School of Law in 1966, and served his legal clerkship with the law firm of Mahaley & Duvall in Coudersport, PA. Upon successfully completing the requirements of admission to the Pennsylvania Bar, Bruce established his own law firm in Coudersport, PA on January 1, 1968.
Bruce was deeply dedicated to serving his community. He acted as a tireless advocate for many of the county’s governmental and other not-for-profit organizations, served as a loyal member of numerous civic clubs, and provided pro bono legal advice to countless others in need. Among other roles, Bruce served as Solicitor of Potter County and many of the townships, boroughs and municipal authorities in the area for many years; Solicitor for the Potter County Planning Commission; President of the Potter County Bar Association for two terms; a member and Master of the Fraternal Order of Free & Accepted Masons in Coudersport, PA; Chairman of the Potter County Chapter of the American Red Cross; Chief Advisor of the Potter County Coroner’s Office; a member of the American Eagles Motorcycle Club in Ulysses, PA (holding the cherished post of “Legal Eagle”); a member of the Carl E. Hyde American Legion Post #963 in Ulysses, PA; a member of the Coudersport American Legion Potter Post #192; a member of the Coudersport Area Lions Club; a member of the Coudersport Exchange Club (now Coudersport Service Club); and a member of the Brookland Club in Ulysses, PA.
Bruce was also active in local, state and national politics and policy in the pursuit of the betterment and welfare of his community. Among other roles, he served as longtime Chairman of the Potter County Republican Committee; a committee member of the Pennsylvania Board of Health; an appointed member of the Judicial Nominating Committee for the 55th Judicial District of Pennsylvania; as Special Assistant Attorney General for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania; and a member of The Pennsylvania Society not-for-profit organization.
Bruce was also a prolific entrepreneur, and very active in the local business community. In 1972, he incorporated the family business, DBC Enterprises, Inc., which remains headquartered in Coudersport, PA and is now led by his older son and business partner for more than 25 years, D. Bruce Cahilly II. In 2008, Bruce partnered in his legal practice with his younger daughter Karen C. Cahilly, Esquire; together, they formed Cahilly & Cahilly Law Offices, also headquartered in Coudersport, PA. Bruce was also an active member and President of the Coudersport Rotary Club; Chairman and member of the Board of Directors of the Grange National Bank of Ulysses (now known as First Citizens Community Bank); and Chairman and CEO of the First National Bank of Genesee.
Bruce is survived by a large and loving family. In addition to his wife Chyrl, Bruce is survived by his brother Glenn Moylan (Mary) Cahilly of New Tripoli, PA; his sister, Joan A. (Craig) Brown of Durham, NC; his four children: Gael L. Cahilly of Long Island, NY, D. Bruce (Janet) Cahilly II of Emporium, PA, Jason Glen (Beth) Cahilly, Esquire, of Old Greenwich, Connecticut, and Karen C. Cahilly, Esquire, of Coudersport, PA; his fourteen grandchildren: Amber L. Nardone, Mario M. Nardone, Vincent John Nardone, D. Giovanni Nardone, D. Bruce Cahilly III, Aubrey M. Cahilly, J. Alexander Cahilly, Caroline E. Cahilly, Glen Moylan Cahilly, Lundeen B. Cahilly, Paige E. Espenshade, Sarah Espenshade, Julian Smith, and Aristotle A. Smith; his great-grandson, Darren M. Nardone; and many nieces and nephews. Bruce also is survived by his six step-children: Shannon L. (Doug) Eckert of Coudersport, PA; Greg P. (Megan) Gooch of Manhattan, NY; Jarratt J. (Melanie) Gooch of Cranberry, PA; Jayson B. Gooch of Coudersport, PA; Major Jill R. (Corey) Moss, currently serving with the U.S. Army in Kansas; and Sydney D. Darrin of Coudersport, PA; as well as nine step-grandchildren and a step-great-granddaughter. Bruce was predeceased by his parents and his nephew, Frank Rojs.
Friends may call on Saturday, February 1, 2014 from 11 am to 2 pm at the Gospel Tabernacle Church in Coudersport, PA. A memorial service will follow at 2 pm with the Rev. David Minor, Sr., officiating. In addition, all are welcome to attend a wake held in Bruce’s honor and in celebration of his fun-loving approach to life, starting at 7:00 pm at the Coudersport American Legion.
Flowers are gratefully declined and will be provided by the family. Memorials may be made to Teacher’s Pet Rescue, 19 Blackberry Lane, Coudersport, PA 16915; the Carl E. Hyde American Legion Post 693, P.O. Box 236, Ulysses, PA 16948; the Gospel Tabernacle Church, 420 Route 6 West, Coudersport, PA 16915; or to the Heritage AFlame Ministries, 198 Salt Rising Road, Bolivar, NY 14715.