Our Beloved Brothers -               May They Rest in Peace.........

In this page, we pay tribute to those great Supporter (Family and Friends), great teachers (Faculty) and the memory of Essex Men that came before us at our great school.


This is a lasting memorial to their lives and bond to the school that unites us. May the Essex Men impacted by their contributions to Essex Catholic, their families and their friends share in our sorrow.......for these brothers represent a small; but, important part in our lasting history.

Margaret "Peggy" Conway, 89, of Rutherford, N.J., Distinguished educator died peacefully on Oct. 16, 2015, after a brief illness. Viewing will be at Calhoun Mania Funeral Home, 19 Lincoln Ave., Rutherford, N.J., on Monday and Tuesday, Oct. 19 and 20, from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Mass of Christian Burial will be Wednesday, Oct. 21, at 9:30 a.m. at St. Mary's Church, 91 Home Ave., Rutherford, N.J. Interment will follow at George Washington Memorial Cemetery in Paramus, N.J. Margaret loved flowers, and they are appreciated. Margaret was born in New York City in 1926 and graduated from Cathedral High School, Hunter College, and New York University, where she received her doctoral degree in applied mathematics, ABD. Margaret was an educator and scholar of applied mathematics and was an adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University at the Rutherford, N.J., and Teaneck, N.J., campuses. She also taught high school at Essex Catholic High School in Newark, N.J., beginning in 1968, where she was the first female teacher at an all-boys Catholic high school. A teacher of college AP calculus, she was also the moderator of the ski club at the school.


On a personal note, Ms. Conway was my Geometry teacher, she was a kind spirit who taught with patience and wisdom. She did not tolerate laziness and as a true educator; who believed in the greatness of the students. Mrs. Conway taught mathematics and Life Lessons - to the best of her abilities. Grateful generations of Essex Catholic Men mourn her passing. For additional information click here.


Ed Chafart (class of 1984)

Joseph Del Grosso  (Class of 1965) Recently retired president of the Newark Teachers Union, beloved husband, father and grandfather, passed away on Wednesday, Aug. 5, 2015, at home, surrounded by his loving family. Born a Newark, N.J., resident on Aug. 25, 1947, Joseph Del Grosso was the president of the Newark Teachers Union, the largest local teachers union in the State of New Jersey, with over 5,000 members, retiring June 30, 2015. Joseph attended Essex Catholic High School in Newark and graduated in 1965. He then attended St. Leo's College in St. Leo City, Fla., and graduated in 1969 with a B.A. in political science. Joseph went on to attend Kean University, where he completed his elementary certification in 1974.  In 1995, Mr. Del Grosso was elected by an overwhelming vote of confidence to the position of president of the Newark Teachers Union. Mr. Del Grosso was a strong union leader and professional advocate for N.T.U.'s teachers, aides, and clerks throughout the Newark school district and the State of New Jersey.  Joseph is survived by his loving wife, Loretta Catena; his beloved daughter, Jeannine, and cherished grandson, Gage. In lieu of flowers, donations in his memory may be made to the N.T.U. Education Foundation, 1019 Broad St., Newark, N.J. 07102, Attn: Isabel, c/o The Joseph Del Grosso Memorial Scholarship.

Lawrence A. Johnson (Class of 1966) Funeral is tomorrow night for Parlin resident, loving uncle, avid bowler Lawrence "Larry" A. Johnson, 67, of Old Bridge, N.J., passed away Friday, Aug. 14, 2015, at Raritan Bay Medical Center in Old Bridge. Calling hours at the funeral home will be Monday from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Funeral services will be held Monday at 8 p.m. from the Carmen F. Spezzi Funeral Home, 15 Cherry Lane, Parlin, N.J. Letters of condolence, directions and completed arrangements can be found at spezzifuneralhome.com. Born in Newark, N.J., Larry resided in Parlin for the past 25 years and Colonia, N.J., for 22 years prior. After graduating from Essex Catholic High School, Larry attended Seton Hall University. He most recently worked at Woodbridge Developmental Center and was a member of CWA Local 1040. Larry was an avid bowler, member of the USBC, and proud president of Majestic Thursday Night Mixed League for the past 15 years.

Mark P. Connolly (Class of 1973) passed away July 31, 2015, after a 10-year battle with appendiceal cancer. He was 60 years old. Services were held in San Rafael. A Memorial Mass in celebration of Mark's life will be held on Saturday, Sept. 12, at 1 p.m. at St. Mary's Church in Nutley(No flowers please). Born in Newark, N.J., to Joseph and Dorothy Jackson Connolly, Mark attended St. Mary's School and Essex Catholic High School. In 1975 he moved West, received a business degree from San Francisco State, and settled in California, where he married, raised his sons, and established his career in ocean freight logistics, working most recently with Hapag-Lloyd. Mark was known for his compassion, wisdom, strength, humor, and improvised songs on the harmonica and guitar. An avid reader, he could converse easily on many topics. Mark loved people, most of all his family. This deep love carried him through his illness, and helped him live to see his sons grow into young men. Mark is survived by his wife, Diana Barton Connolly; his sons, James and John; his siblings and their spouses.

Donald Chester Zalesky (Class of 1980)  Skilled teacher and translator, much-loved brother and uncle, 'he made us laugh until it hurt' Donald Chester Zalesky, 53, went Home peacefully in his sleep on Wednesday, July 1, 2015. Donald grew up in Belleville, N.J., and graduated from Essex Catholic High School, where he was a state champion wrestler. Donald touched our lives as an entertaining and skilled teacher, English/Portuguese translator, and notary. He also enjoyed writing songs. He was comprised of 100 percent love. He was the "Candy Man" and father-uncle-brother-friend-comic to all of the children, now young adults, in his life. He was known and adored for his sarcasm and sharp wit. He made us laugh until it hurt. We had only to look at Donald to know his feelings. He exuded child-like joy in everything he did and was truly a child of God. He will be deeply and continually missed by his family, church family, and friends. 



Nicholas J. Franzi (Class of 1970) passed away Thursday, June 25, 2015, at Hackensack University Medical Center in Hackensack, N.J., with his loving family by his side. Mr. Franzi was born in Newark, N.J., the son of Natalie and the late Peter Franzi. He was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School and earned his bachelor's degree from Rutgers University. During Nick's four years at Essex Catholic, the Fencing team won the state Championship and several other prestigeous competitions every year. In his senior year, Nick was part of the Foil team and proved to be "tough in the clutch' securing vital points for the undefeated Fencing Team. A true historian of Essex Catholic Fencing, he created a website to document the great history of Essex catholic Fencing ( www.ecfencingalumni.com.)


 He is survived by his wife of 35 years, Brenda Franzi of Belle Mead, N.J.; his daughters, Cristina Busacca and husband Justin, of Falls Church, Va.; Natalie Franzi of Belle Mead, N.J., and Laura Franzi of Belle Mead, N.J.; his mother, Natalie Franzi of Fairfield, N.J.; his mother-in-law, Rosina Musto of Belle Mead, N.J.; his sister, JoAnn DelRusso and husband, Richard, of Fairfield, N.J., and his brother, Peter Franzi and wife Diana of Fairfield, N.J. He is also survived by his nephews, Jon Peter DelRusso and wife Tara, and RJ DelRusso; nieces, Carissa Franzi and Jaclyn Franzi, and by his godson, Christian Walsh. 

Emil M. Liloia (Class of 1964) joined friends and family in Heaven on June 4, 2015. Born in Newark, N.J., on Aug. 12, 1946, Emil lived in Belleville, N.J., and Brick, N.J., before moving to Richmond Hill, Ga., in 1994. Growing up in Belleville, he attended St. Peter's Elementary School and graduated from Essex Catholic High School in 1964. He then attended Newark College of Engineering (now NJIT), where he graduated in 1968 with a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering. He later continued his studies and gained his master's. He began his career at Johnson and Johnson, eventually ending up at Merck, EMD Chemical, in Bayonne, N.J., which led to him and his wife moving to Georgia.  Emil met and eventually married the love of his life, his wife of 43 years, Irene. Together, they lived a blessed life, and parented two children, Michael Anthony and Pat Christopher.


Richard James Conway Sr., 87,(Essex Catholic Parent and Supporter) of Toms River passed away on Thursday March 26, 2015 at Community Medical Center surrounded by his loving family. A lifelong resident of New Jersey, he resided in Chatham, Newark, Orange and East Orange prior to moving to Toms River, NJ in 1996. Richard was a World War II Veteran who served in the Navy. He was a loving and caring father and husband to the late Miriam Ruth Conway, and was affectionately known as PopPop to his 18 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren. Prior to receiving his education at Lehigh University, where he obtained his engineering degree, he was a Navy WWII Veteran, though he often said that he went to sleep, and when he woke up the war was over. He was also a master plumber, a skill that was taught to him by his father, Thomas Conway. He was a Professional Engineer for over 45 years, holding positions with Worthington Pump, State of New Jersey, Professional Plan Examiners and Township of Parsippany. Dick, as he was known by friends and family, was actively involved in the Catholic school system particularly Holy Name of Jesus Christ, Essex Catholic High School, East Orange Catholic High School and Marylawn of the Oranges High School.

Carmine Collucci Jr. a longshoreman, 'his family was his pride and joy,' 58 Carmine Collucci Jr., 58, of Union, N.J., died peacefully on Jan. 25, 2015, surrounded by his loving family. The family will accept friends on Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. at Galante Funeral Home, 2800 Morris Ave., Union, N.J. Funeral Mass is on Friday, 11:15 a.m. at St. Michael's Church, Union, N.J. Private entombment for his family will follow. For directions or to send condolences, visitgalantefh.com. Born in Newark, N.J., Mr. Collucci attended Essex Catholic and East Side High School. He was a loyal and dedicated member of ILA/Local 1, employed as a longshoreman at Port Newark Container Terminal. The pride and joy of Carmine's life were his wife and children. He cherished family, friends, and will be remembered for his devout devotion to God 

Giovanni (John) Clarizio (Class of 1975) of Point Pleasant, passed away peacefully on January 20, 2015. Born and raised in Newark, NJ, John attended Our Lady of  Good Counsel Elementary School and Essex Catholic High School. John learned to play accordion at the age of 12 and later became NJ State Champion in 1972. 

John always carried the gift of music with him. While working in several of the family businesses, he opened the original Clarizio Music Studio in Bloomfield, NJ at the age of 20. In 1983, John married and moved to Point Pleasant and raised his family. He was a Eucharistic Minister and PTA volunteer at Saint Peter's Church for many years. After working for Philip Morris, John opened Clarizio Music Studio in Pt. Pleasant, NJ. John's passion for his art, and love for his students, has changed the lives of so many. Together with his wife, they have built his dream of a community of love and music that is second to none. He was also an outstanding pianist with a talent for original composition. His wonderful sense of humor and generosity were known to all who met him. He enjoyed concerts, whether it was his students or jam sessions with professional performers 

Allan Joseph Peccatiello (Class of 1966) of Charlotte, NC passed away peacefully on December 1 , 2014 after a year long battle with brain cancer. Allan was born in Newark, NJ to the late Alfonse and Dora Peccatiello. He was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School and Seton Hall University. After working as an accountant in New York City, he started his own accounting firm in Morris Plains, NJ. Allan and his wife, Edie, raised their family in Parsippany, NJ. In 1995, they relocated to New Bern, NC where Allan was CFO of Aylward Enterprises for 13 years before retiring to Charlotte, NC in 2008. 

Allan was a devoted husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend who was affectionately known as "Tappy" to his 6 grandchildren. Always loving and dedicated to his family, he also loved music and the beach and was a member of the Knights of Columbus. 


Victor M. Silva (Vic),  ( Class of 1970) passed away on Tuesday, May 5, 2015, surrounded by his loved ones. Born in Portugal on Aug. 5, 1950, he came to the United States in 1960 with his family. He resided in Newark before moving to Ocean County 43 years ago.

Vic was an avid soccer player. At Essex Catholic, Vic was a 4-year Varsity starter and played on the only two State Championship team in the school history. During his 4 years, the soccer team complied a 38-8-8 record and was named "the proudest possesion of the Essex Catholic Athletic Department in 1970." during his junior year, Vic Silva led all Essex booters in scoring (22 goal season) and in both State finals, he scored decisive goals. According to many Esssex historians, he is ranked among the top 5 best players in the school's history. In 2004, Vic was inducted into the Essex Catholic Hall of Fame.  Vic's legacy is his love of the Green Bay Packers. He attended numerous games at Lambeau Field, including the XLV 2010 Superbowl - Green Bay Packers vs. Pittsburgh Steelers. Vic was employed as a union laborer for many years, before becoming a self-employed contractor.

Vic was predeceased by his parents, Armando and Maria Silva; and siblings, Deolinda, Amaro, Beatrize and husband Jorge Simoes, and Grace. He is survived by his beloved Patricia Padula; his 4 children, son Jason and wife Anna, son Jesse, daughter JaimieLynn and husband Brian Campbell, daughter Janine and husband Shawn Conlon, and their mother Donna Silva; 3 step-children, Kerri and husband Arthur Ehrmantraut; Marisa and husband Joe Lierni; Daniel Mazzoni and wife Jennifer; two brothers Manuel and wife Victoria and Joao and wife Lizette; plus 15 loving grandchildren; and many nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday, May 7 at Silverton Memorial Funeral Home, 2482 Church Rd, Toms River. For the funeral Friday, arrive at the funeral home at 8:30 a.m., funeral mass to follow at 9:30 a.m. at The Church of Visitation, 730 Linwood Avenue, Brick. Interment will follow at Ocean County Memorial Park, Toms River.


Christopher Bannon (Class of 1973) is the son of Ann and the late Emmett Acocella, brother of Paul Acocella and his wife Christine; Emmett Acocella and his wife Pam; Estelle Mahon and her late husband Bill; and the late Stephan Bannon. He had many nieces and nephews who brought him joy. He was self employed as a computer programmer developing systems for the banking industry in the US and Europe. Later in life, he followed his passion and started his own business as a professional photographer in the West Essex Area. After Essex Catholic high school, he served in the Coast Guard as a Boatswains Mate. Part of his duties while in the service was as a Lighthouse Keeper. He maintained the Race Rock Lighthouse at the North Shore entrance to the Long Island Sound. He was part of the last crew there before it became automated.

He devoted his time, talent and professional expertise to the Historical Society of West Caldwell and other area historical societies in the area. Through his volunteering he helped to preserve the local area history for over 20 years.

COMMENT: Chris Bannon was in my class.  The class of 1974.  We were lab partners in Biology in 1970 our freshman year.  The last time I saw Chris was many years ago here in NY City where I work downtown.  There was a Coast Gurad Station near the tip of Manhattan.  I saw Chris in his uniform walking with some colleagues.  I recall being proud to see him looking so stately as he strode down Broadway.  Perhaps Chris left Essex in 1973 – it’s 41 years now and I do not recall. Very sorry to hear of his untimely passing.



Bill Hart, 1974

Daniel McGonigle ( Class of 1962) passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015, at his home in Bloomfield, N.J. after a long illness.  Born in Newark, N.J., Danny lived in Newark, and the last 35 years in Bloomfield. He was a retired teacher and guidance counselor, retiring from Arts High School in 2004 after 38 years of employment in Newark public schools. Danny was a member of the ECSCA, Friends of the Library Board in Bloomfield, and the Bloomfield Planning Board. He also volunteered his time at the Bloomfield Public Library, St John's Soup Kitchen in Newark, and Tony's Kitchen in Montclair, N.J. Danny also was an active member of the JCC of Livingston, N.J. During his lifetime, Danny traveled extensively to Europe, South America, the Middle East, Russia, and the Caribbean. Dan was an outstanding baseball player at Essex Catholic High School and was also an accomplished handball player. Other hobbies included skiing, visiting the Jersey Shore, eating out, and attending Broadway plays. Dan graduated from Essex Catholic High School, and Seton Hall University with a B.A., and earned his M.A. from Kean University. Danny was the beloved son of the late John T. McGonigle and Rose McGonigle; brother of Rosemarie Bock of Las Vegas, Nev., and the late Barbara Hammond, Joan Boetger, and John McGonigle. He will be missed by all of his many close friends. For those who wish, in lieu of flowers donations sent to St. John's Kitchen in Newark in the name of Daniel McGonigle would be appreciated.

Please express condolences at www. oboylefuneralhome.com

COMMENT: I’m quite sorry to see the news about Danny McGonigle’s passing.  He was a great guy.  We both graduated from Essex in 1962 (the second graduating class) and both played on the baseball team together.  We had a very good team in ’62 losing to Seton Hall Prep by one run in the NJ State Parochial school championship game which was played at Seton Hall University.  Danny was key player on the team.  I’m saddened by his passing.


I’ve been living in South Carolina for a number of years and don’t get to NJ very often.  Hopefully I can time one of my infrequent visits to coincide with an Alumni event.Keep up the good work and the communications with alumni.


Joe Deehan, Class of 1962

John P. Flannery (Class of 1966), died on  March 20, 2014, after a courageous battle with pancreatic cancer at Regional Hospital of Scranton. He was the husband of the former Linda Ghigiarelli. The couple had been married for 37 years.

Born in Newark, N.J., he was a son of the late Curtis and Mary Pohorilak Flannery. He was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School, Newark, and received his bachelor's degree in engineering from Newark College of Engineering.


He was a loving husband, father and friend. He loved spending time with his family and friends, especially traveling with his wife, Linda. He will be dearly missed by all who knew him.


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Stephen E. Becker (Class of 1970) died Sunday evening, June 1st 2014, at his home after a brief illness. Born Nov. 7, 1952, in East Orange, N.J., son of the late Edward and Mary Connors Becker, Stephen was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School and attended Rutgers University. Stephen made his career as a musician. He traveled around the world as the drummer for Southside Johnny & the Asbury Jukes.


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Shaka Kent Davis (freshman at Essex Catholic in 2003) died on Friday, August 16, 2013.  Although he graduated from Bonner High School in North Carolina, Shaka was a tried- and-true Jersey boy.  He attended Heywood Elementary School, St. Benedict’s Middle School, Bishop Francis Essex Catholic High School, and Berkeley College where he majored in Computer Science.  It was at Essex Catholic, however, where Shaka discovered his love of and talent for speed.  As a freshman, he set new school records for both the 100-meter and 200-meter races and his team won the Division Championship for the Parochial School Division B Outdoor Track in 2003.

And yet, his competitive edge was not for the track alone.  Shaka would spend many an evening sharing his other favorite pastime, video games, with his friends and family.  He always had the latest gear and games, and almost always outplayed and outwitted those who challenged him.  Gone too soon at the young age of 26, he leaves behind many timeless memories and loved ones. Right before his passing, Shaka’s fulfilled his lifelong dream by purchasing and driving his first motorcycle.  We know that he is out there, with a big smile and some flashy sunglasses on his face, having the ride of his life.

Pablo Cabrera (Class of 1976), 56, of Westminster, died Tuesday, August 5, 2014 at Carroll Hospital Center. Born March 20, 1958 in Newark, NJ, he was the son of Rita O. Diaz Cabrera and Pablo D. Cabrera, of Newark, NJ. Survived by his wife, Joanne Balsamo Newman Cabrera.He graduated from Essex Catholic High School in Newark, NJ in 1976 and attended Rutgers.

He was employed by Trailblazer and Arbitron in quality control. He enjoyed fishing, karaoke, joke books, photography and watching jeopardy. He was an artist, a jokester and New York Giants fan. In addition to his wife, he is survived by children Andres Cabrera of Catonsville, Nicholas Newman of Westminster and Emily Newman of Westminster and Elaine Anderson.


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Robert "Bob" R. Roszko (Class of 1966) age 65 of Wanaque, formerly of Wayne, died peacefully on Saturday, April 26, 2014. He was born and raised in Newark and lived in Irvington;afterwards, Bob graduated from Montclair State College in Montclair with a Bachelors degree in Education with an emphasis on Business subjects in 1970. He later continued his education at Montclair State having received his Masters Degree in Geography.

It was during his years at Montclair State College that Bob met Lois by chance in the cafeteria. Bob had a job filling vending machines and the two hit it off. Their first date was to the movies and then a trip to the West's Diner in Little Falls. Bob proposed marriage on the campus of Montclair State College and they married on November 16, 1968 at Saint George's Church in Paterson. They had a family style reception dinner at the Brownstone House in Paterson and honeymooned at the Split Rock Lodge in the Poconos. Bob and Lois had forty-five years of a loving and caring marriage. After college he worked as a teacher at Hackensack High School for over twenty years before retiring in 1991. Bob loved fishing for trout and bass in streams and lakes; he loved to spend opening day at his favorite fishing spot in Califon's South Branch.


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This past week, the Essex Catholic brotherhood lost a close friend and brother Eric Lewis (Class of 1985). At Essex, Eric lettered in Basketball including the captaincy his senior year. Beloved by his classmates and eager to maintain enduring friendships thorough all these years, Eric leaves a large void in the lives of both friends and family.


Eric Lewis' funeral will be held @ Christian Love Church on Lyons Ave, Irvington on Saturday,  Sept. 6th @ 10am. Repass at Knobby' s Tavern.


Rest in peace my Essex brother and may the Spirit of the Eagle shine brightly in your honor.

Frank R. Farrant Sr. (Class of 1963), died on Tuesday, April 15, 2014, at home surrounded by his loving family. Born in East Orange, Frank had lived and was raised in Newark before moving to Toms River in 1971. He was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School and Ocean County College. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army and U.S. Army Reserves, serving from 1969-1982, out of Ft. Sill, Ft. Benning, & Ft. Hancock, attaining the rank of SGT First Class. Frank had worked as a biomedical electronic technician for 35 years with Princeton Medical Center, Jersey City Medical Center, St. Francis Medical Center, UMDNJ-Newark, Christ Hospital, and had finished his career at Rahway Hospital, working for GE Medical Services, retiring in 2007. He was a former Cub Scout Leader and former Scout Master of Pack & Troop 92, Toms River. He was an active member and parishioner of St. Justin's Church, Toms River, having served as an usher, lector, Eucharistic Minister, CCD teacher, Mass Coordinator, and former member of their Holy Name Society. Frank also was a member of the Knights of Columbus Council 4969, Toms River. Frank also loved to tell stories about his life, whether it was from growing up in Newark, summering in Toms River, or while he was serving in the Army.


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Stephen D. Sullivan, (Class of 1963), a Georgetown University basketball great, MVP on European teams, grew up in East Orange, 68 Stephen D. Sullivan, 68, formerly of East Orange, N.J., peacefully passed after a long illness in London, UK, at Trinity Hospice on Aug. 27, 2014, surrounded by his family. Steve was born in Newark, N.J., raised in East Orange, and lived for the past 45 years in Spain, Italy, and London. Steve attended Essex Catholic High School and Georgetown University where he excelled in basketball and was one of their all-time greats and voted as one of Georgetown's top 35 greatest players.

He was a member of the USA Gold Medal basketball teams of the 1968 Pan Am games and World Games. He was a top draft choice of the NBA Detroit Pistons and ABA Pittsburgh Pipers. He spent nine years professionally playing in Europe and received numerous MVP awards. After his basketball career, Steve was active in his European import and export business.


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Timothy "Tim" Long was a 1992 graduate of Essex Catholic School. After graduation, he attended college and received his certification in surgical technology. Tim was always a high achiever. He started his career at NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases (HJD) and worked there for five years with renowned surgeons. In 2001, he met his soul mate, Felicia Evans Long and married in September 2006. He relocated to Rockville, Maryland and joined the George Washington University Hospital in Washington, DC and worked for 8 years. During this tenure with GWU, he participated in international mission assignments in Guatemala and Guyana. He loved his career in healthcare. Tim was also co-founder of Sweet Candy Café, a confectionery store in Downtown Lumberton, North Carolina. Sadly, he departed his life on August 17, 2014 while on a weekend trip to California. His contagious laugh and zest for life will continue to live on in his wife and family.

Michael E. Melody, (Class of 1974) passed away on Feb. 15, 2014.


Born in Newark, N.J., Mr. Melody was raised in Irvington, N.J., before moving to Brick. He retired as an Essex County corrections officer after 26 years of service.  Mr. Melody was proud of his Irish-American heritage and was named the Law Enforcement Officer honoree for the 2012 Essex County Police and Fire Kick-Off to the St. Paddy's Day benefit.


He was a member of PBA Local 382, the Essex County Police and Fire Emerald Society, the Irvington PAL, the Essex Catholic High School Alumni Association, the Neumann University Baseball Diamond Club, and the Essex County Retired Police and Fire Association. Mr. Melody was a communicant at the R.C. Church of the Epiphany in Brick.


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Raymond James McDonough (Class of 1967) , mayor of Harrison, N.J., died suddenly on Feb. 12, 2014, in the Harrison Town Hall. He was 65 years of age.


A lifelong resident of Harrison, Mayor McDonough was born on Feb. 2, 1949, to Raymond J. McDonough Sr., and Marie Young McDonough. He attended Holy Cross School and Essex Catholic High School. He worked as a member of Plumbers Local No. 24 for 33 years, as well as with the Passaic Valley Sewerage Commission. He was a commissioner of the New Jersey Redevelopment Authority, a position to which he was appointed by the governor. He was a member of Harrison East Newark Elks B.P.O.E. No. 2326 and the Knights of Columbus No. 402 Harrison. Before becoming mayor in 2005, Mayor McDonough served on the Harrison Town Council for 17 years. His life of service focused on the needs and the development of the town of Harrison and the needs of the citizens, whom he served faithfully during his terms of office.


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Eugene "Gene" Quigley (Class of 1969), of Belford, N.J., passed away peacefully on Jan 21, 2014. Eugene was born on Jan, 17, 1951, in Newark, N.J., and grew up in Irvington, N.J. After graduating from Essex Catholic High School in Newark and St. Leo's College in Florida, he became a longtime resident of West Orange, N.J., until moving to Belford five months ago.
Gene was a dedicated Newark fireman for 30 years from which he retired in 2010. During his career, he served at numerous firehouses and was a fire boat captain. Gene was also an avid deep sea fisherman.


For further information, please refer to the link below: 



Lawrence Charles Dino (Class of 1961), known as Dino, Deens or Larry, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 15, 2014, in Arlington, TX. He was born Nov. 19, 1942, in Newark, N.J., and graduated from Essex Catholic in Newark. He later worked for a newspaper doing photography. He spent summers on the Jersey shore and also loved vacationing in Florida. He married Maureen Dino of New Jersey, whom he called Maggie, in 1971 and they later moved to Texas to be closer to her parents. They had four children; although they divorced, they remained close. He sold typewriters and computers for a short time until he opened up a sandwich shop, Dino's Subs, in 1980. He was a successful business owner and excelled in anything he put his heart and mind to. He loved cars, Cadillacs in particular. He liked to think he could golf but he earned the nickname "kerplunk" for a reason, and he loved to cook. You will be missed tremendously here on earth. Until we meet again.


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Rev. Joseph P. Pietropinto (Class of 1962of Secaucus, NJ, returned to our Lord on Jan. 15, 2014. Born in Elizabeth, NJ to the Late Joseph and Jean (nee Scioscia) Pietropinto, Fr. Joe is survived by his brother, Vincent, and numerous relatives and close friends. Fr. Joe attended St. Francis Xavier Grammar School and Parish in Newark, where he was an altar boy and member of the choir. While attending Essex Catholic High School in Newark, he enjoyed being a member of the Glee Club and attending the NJ All State Chorus. Fr. Joe attended Seton Hall College and Divinity School as well as Immaculate Conception Seminary in Darlington, NJ, where he was the organist.


Later assignments were St. Andrew's in Westwood, N.J.; Notre Dame in North Caldwell, N.J., and Our Lady Queen of Peace in Maywood, N.J. He served as pastor of Our Lady Queen of Peace and Immaculate Conception Church in Secaucus.


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Richard J. Washington of Barnegat, N.J., died on Tuesday, Feb. 18, 2014, surrounded by his wife and siblings, both Washington and McCreesh.


Born and raised in Newark, N.J., Rich and his wife, Maureen, lived in Plainfield, N.J., and Middlesex, N.J., prior to moving to Barnegat following their retirement in 2007.
Rich attended Broadway Junior High and Essex Catholic High School in Newark, N.J. He continued his education and obtained blue and black seals while a member of Operating Engineers Local 68.
Before his 2007 retirement, Rich worked at Aventis/Sanofis in Bridgewater, N.J. Prior to that, he was employed at the A&P in Edison, N.J., and AT&T in Bridgewater, N.J.


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It is with a heavy heart that we share the passing of Mr. William McCrystal. Although his death occurred over the past week and emails have been sent to all Essex Catholic Alumni, we were unable to post the information unitl now.


Here is the link to the  Obituary section of the Newark Star Ledger:


Mr. McCrystal was born and raised in Jersey City, N.J. Upon graduation from St. Peter's Prep, he entered the Society of Jesus and was a Jesuit for nearly 10 years, three of which were spent teaching Latin and directing the Glee Club at Brooklyn Prep. He attained both his B.A. and M.A. in classical languages from Fordham. Bill briefly worked for Metropolitan Life Insurance Company in New York City before joining the faculty of Essex Catholic High School in Newark, N.J., and later East Orange, N.J., where for 29 years he taught Latin, German, and English, and was a department chairman. Mr. McCrystal then taught Latin for 11 years at Wayne Hills High School, where his students consistently won awards in classics competitions. He spent the last eight of his 51 years in the classroom at Oratory Prep in Summit, N.J., where he taught alongside his son. 


As a tribute to Mr. McCrystal's contribution to the great legacy at Essex Catholic; please remember this great man for the honor and respect he brought to his profession. Many of the great alumni at Essex Catholic owe their success after ECHS to his personal contribution to their education. In leaving, I have attached the advice Mr McCrystal gave his graduating seniors (from the 1988 Talon yearbook):


"Stay close to God. Honor your parents. Cherish Quality. Live cheerfully and responsibly."

Gerald F Brown (Class of 1965)

Although, he made the ultimate sacrifice for his country, while on his tour of duty in Vietnam and died in battle on June 2, 1968. We have recieved several references to his name and his friendship from his Essex classmates and his name is on the Vietnam Veterans Memorial. Please keep his family and his friends in your thoughts and prayers as they remember his life and sacrifice. May the Eagles soar high and proud for our beloved brother. 


  • Wall Name:GERALD F BROWN
  • Date of Birth:7/2/1947
  • Date of Casualty:6/2/1968
  • Home of Record:NEWARK
  • County of Record:ESSEX COUNTY
  • State:NJ
  • Branch of Service:ARMY
  • Rank:SP4
  • Panel/Row:61W, 10
  • Casualty Province:PLEIKU

See more at: http://www.vvmf.org/Wall-of-Faces/6065/GERALD-F-BROWN#sthash.aO9RbB1M.dpuf

Michael LaTorre (Class of 1972)


59, of Nutley, N.J., formerly of Bloomfield, N.J., passed away on Thursday, Aug. 22, 2013, at the home of his sister, surrounded by his loving family.

Gene Mercadante (Class of 1970)
56, passed away Sunday June 14, 2009, at his home in Highlands. He was born in Newark and lived in Fair Haven for 30 years before moving to Highlands a year ago. He earned his MBA from Monmouth University and later went on to work for AIG as the Director of Mail & Print Services. He was an avid fan of the Yankees, Giants and Knicks. He loved spending time at the beach and with his son Joel and his friends. In Fair Haven, Gene was a volunteer fireman and coached many of his son's baseball, basketball and football teams over the years. 
Gene was predeceased by his parents, Gene and Gertrude Mercadante. He is survived by his wife, Linda; his son, Joel Mercadante and his wife Meredith of Hoboken; his daughter, Heather Anderson and her husband Nels of Ocean Grove; and his sister, Dr. Linda Mercadante of Columbus, Ohio. 

Dennis Carl Pissot (Class of 1970) 

Age 59, of Cedar Lane, Blairsville, passed away, Wednesday, December 14, 2011 at Union General Hospital.  Dennis moved to this area 2 ½ years ago from Snellville, GA.  He was born in Bellville, NJ, September 28, 1952. Dennis was an avid baseball card collector.  He was a U.S. Army Vietnam Veteran.  He was preceded in death by his father, Carl F. Pissott.  Dennis was a member of St. Francis of Assisi Catholic Church.

            Survivors include his wife, Deborah Pissott of Blairsville, GA, mother, Elsie Pissott of Grand Rapids, MI, children, Philip (Jessey) Pissott of Snellville, GA, Tamara Pissott and Lauren Pissott both of Hawaii, sister, Karen Bakale of Grand Rapids, MI, father-in-law, Philip Gatlin of Blairsville, sisters-in-law, Lynda Langhoff of Blairsville, Lorilee Webb of Hiawassee and Sarah Anderson of Spokane, WA, grandson, Ethan Pissott, several nieces, nephews and cousins, many other relatives and friends also survive.

            Memorial services were held at 2 p.m., Saturday, December 17, 2011 at the Mountain View Funeral Home Chapel with Father George Kloster officiating.  In lieu of flowers make memorials to the American Heart Association.

Mountain View Funeral Home of Blairsville is in charge of the arrangements.  You may sign the family guest book and send condolences on line at www.mountainviewfuneralhome.com

Larry Schumacher (Class of 1966)

Born in Rich Square, North Carolina, Larry lived most of his life in East Orange, New Jersey. He attended Stockton and Columbian Elementary Schools in East Orange and was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School. Larry was recruited by 60 different colleges. His choice was the University of Notre Dame, in South Bend, Indiana, where he was awarded a B.S. in Economics and M.S. in Counseling Psychology.

Larry was a natural athlete, while attending Essex Catholic, he excelled lettering in 3 sports; Basketball, Football and Track & Field for which he held a state record for 20 years in shot put and discus. He was named 1st Team-All City and All State. Larry was awarded the prestigious "Men of Essex Award" as the outstanding scholar athlete in Essex County '66.

As a member of the Fighting Irish football team at Notre Dame, Larry's accomplishments included the Herring Award, New Jersey's Selected All-American, Independent Colleges All-American, Midwest All-American and was their first African American football defensive captain.

Larry served as an Assistant Coach in 1970 at Notre Dame, was named Essex Coach of the Year by the East Orange Record in 1992 and 1996, and the Star Ledger in 1992 and 1996. In 1997, was named Coach of the Year by the East Orange Irish Association.

Inducted into the Newark Athletic Hall of Fame, Essex Catholic Foundation Hall of Fame, Notre Dame Centennial Award, and appointed as Honorary Head Coach of the North-South Football Classic. Larry also served as Head Football Coach at Clifford J. Scott, Essex Catholic, Summit, Central and East Orange Campus High Schools.

Larry worked with the Medger Evers College, Summit, Newark and East Orange School Districts, and the Essex County Vocational School. He also served as a Senior Manager with Munford & McGrady, Inc., in Newark, NJ and as a Career Education Counselor with the State Department of Education. In 1998, Larry was appointed by the Honorable Robert L. Bowser, Mayor of the City of East Orange, New Jersey, to serve as a City Official in the position of Director of Recreation & Cultural Affairs, which he held until his passing.

Larry was the Co-Founder/Administrator of the Annual Paul Robeson Football Classic. He was the only member of the Men of Essex Organization who was also a recipient of the Men of Essex Award. Larry served on the Essex Catholic High School Foundation and as a member of the Notre Dame Monogram Club.


Link to the Larry Schumacher Website




Sadly,we announce the passing of Joseph P. Moretti (Class of 1969). Joe was a proud graduate who exemplified all that was wonderful about our beloved school. His success was measured by the lives he touched and the people who were fortunate to know him. A great supporter of Essex Catholic, our beloved school was built by great men that emboded the honor, integrity and respect that was Joe Moretti. All Essex men who came before him and those who came after share in this loss. Rest In Peace, Joe Moretti.


For more information, please click on this link:




Wayne J. Mayer (Class of 1970), 61, died on Saturday, March 16, 2013, at St. Clare's Hospital in Dover, N.J. Relatives and friends are invited to attend the funeral from the O'Boyle Funeral Home, 309 Broad St., Bloomfield, N.J., on Friday at 9 a.m. The Funeral Mass will be offered at Sacred Heart Church in Bloomfield at 10 a.m. Interment is private. Visitation will be on Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. Please express condolences at www.oboylefuneralhome.com. Born in Newark, N.J., Wayne resided in Dover, N.J. He was a graduate of Essex Catholic High School in Newark in 1970. He worked with Wausau Insurance of West Orange, N.J., for many years and more recently with Fox & Fox LLP in Livingston, N.J. He was the husband of Barbara Rainone.


On a personal note, I started working on the Alumni Dinner Committee in 2008 and Wayne was the friendly face that welcomed me to the group. His dedication and commitment to Essex Catholic far outshined any work I could ever do. His greatest pleasure came in the interactions we had talkingabout "our days at Essex Catholic" and what it meant to him. Rest in Peace my Brother.


Respectfully Submitted, Ed Chafart (Class of 1984)




On January 18, 2013, the Essex Cathlolic community lost one of our brothers, Rest in Peace

James J. Darcy (Class of 1975)

Anthony Catullo (Class of 1967)



On Dec. 7, 2012. The Essex Catholic community lost one of our own.


On November 17, 2011, Michael B. Oropollo, Sr. (Class of 1963) passed away after a three-month battle against necrotizing pancreatitis.

300 Broadway, Newark NJ
135 Glenwood Ave, East Orange, NJ

Where Are They Now?


As we all remember, the friendships we built at Essex Catholic provided a sense of brotherhood for many of us. Outside of school, we all had our childhood friends; but, these Essex friendship will never be forgotten. For all of us, life took us in different directions and sometimes away from our original paths (even away from New Jersey). In this new section: Where Are They Now? we hope to provide a glimpse of where many of our brothers went and what they are doing with their lives after Essex Catholic.


Hope you enjoy the new section and pleae let us know if there are any of our Brothers who you wish to recognize. Please do not hesitate to write a note in the Contact Us section of this website.

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