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Joseph P. Donegan, age 84 passed away at his home in Bridgewater, NJ surrounded by his loving family on December 4, 2017.
Joseph is survived by his loving wife Peg of 61 years, his five children and their spouses, Kathy & Brian Casey, Patty & Chuck Freyberger, Peggy & John Reilly, Mary Ryan and Jim Russell, Tom Donegan and Carlos Baudino, his ten grandchildren, Matt Reilly and his wife Brit, Jenn Casey, Chris Reilly and his fiancé Mariel, Shannon Casey and her husband Josh Gantomasso, Billy Freyberger, Ryan Casey, Sean Casey, Michael Freyberger and his wife Amy, Kevin Reilly, Lizzie Ryan and his great granddaughter Riley Gantomasso.
He is preceded in death by his parents, Margaret and Joseph Donegan of Caldwell, NJ and his sister, Mary Donegan of Brick, NJ.
Born in the Bronx, Joe spent most of his young life in Caldwell, NJ before marrying the love of his life Peggy Burns of North Arlington. As a lieutenant in the US Army, they spent several years stationed in Germany before making their home in North Arlington where they raised their five children. He was an active member of Queen of Peace parish, the Knights of Columbus, and Gabriel Richard. Joe taught mathematics in Montclair and was an adjunct professor at Bloomfield College. For their retirement years Joe and Peg moved to Brick, NJ where they spent over twenty years enjoying their waterfront view and continuous visits from their family and friends, as well as quiet nights at home watching TV.
The most precious thing in Joe’s life was his family. His home was often filled with the laughter of his children and grandchildren. When he wasn’t involved in a home improvement project, he could be found organizing his photos and recording his memories. Creating journals was a favorite pastime as he believed in the importance of remembering and sharing life’s journey.
Joe had a passion for travel and adventure and loved spending time with Peg on their many vacations. They traveled all over the world, but over the past fifteen years their favorite spot was overlooking the Mediterranean Sea at the Casa Bridgitta in Las Negras, Spain.
The Christmas season was a special time for Joe, from stringing lights, making ornaments and handing out small gift cards to people in his community. He loved seeing the smile on their face when he handed them an unexpected act of kindness.
In lieu of flowers, the family would ask that during the Christmas season you follow Joe’s example and pay it forward with a good deed in his memory.
Visiting hours will be held from 1-3 and 6-8 PM on Wednesday, December 6, 2017 at the Bridgewater Funeral Home, 707 East Main Street, Bridgewater, NJ 08807. A funeral Mass will be offered 11AM on Thursday, December 7, 2017 at Queen of Peace Church, Ridge Road, North Arlington, NJ. Burial will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery in North Arlington.