Bernard W. Cicirelli, 86, of Wayside passed away at peace on May 24th, 2019.
He was born on December 16, 1932 to the late Ralph Cicirelli and Teresa Belmonte in West New York, NJ, where he was raised.
While in high school, Bernard played basketball, which would remain a source of joy and community throughout his life, and through which he met the love of his life, cheerleader, and future wife Loretta Perri.
He then went on to attend Saint Peter’s College in Jersey City, where he continued to play basketball. He was named an All-American player and was eventually inducted into the school’s Athletic Hall of Fame. His warm and friendly personality led him to make lifelong friends and connections at Saint Peter’s College, which began a three-generation legacy at the school, with several of his children and grandchildren attending Saint Peter’s College, too. Bernard was also involved in ROTC at Saint Peter’s, and after graduation, he married Loretta, and began serving our country as a First Lieutenant in the United States Army beginning in 1955.
The couple then moved to Chambersburg, PA, where they started a family. After serving in the Army, he and Loretta returned to NJ, and opened a large printing business, Peacock Publications, acting as the company’s president and owner for over 50 years. They raised their four children in Hasbrouck Heights before moving down the shore over thirty years ago. They were happily married for 55 years.
Bernie and Loretta loved spending time together, and truly enjoyed each other’s company. Along with family and friends, they attended over 26 NCAA Final Four basketball tournaments, and loved traveling and dining out. In their later years, basketball continued to be a big part of their lives, as they would often attend their grandchildren’s games as their biggest fans and could be heard cheering them on from the sidelines. Their biggest joy in life was spending time with family and watching their children and grandchildren grow up.
Bernie is predeceased by his wife Loretta Perri Cicirelli, and his sister Nancy DiSclafani.
Surviving are his 4 children: Lynne Thomasey and her husband James of Wayside, Bernard Cicirelli, Jr. and his wife Anna of Montville, Diane Rinaldi and her husband Joseph of Colts Neck, and Daniel Cicirelli of Kearny. Bernard will also be fondly remembered by his brother and “pal” Ralph Cicirelli and his wife Phyllis. His greatest pride and joy were his 10 grandchildren, Victoria (Michael), Stephen (Chessie), Joseph (Kaitlyn), Robert (Stephanie), Daniel, Laura (Mark), Melanie, Matthew, Joseph, and Catherine, and his 6 precious great-grandchildren, Olivia, Liam, Sofia, Finley, Juliana, and Nora.
A viewing will be at the Holmdel Funeral Home, 26 S. Holmdel Rd, Holmdel, NJ 07733 from 2-5pm on Sunday, June 2nd.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at St. Gabriel’s Historic Church, 549 County Rd 520, Marlboro, NJ 07746 at 10:30am on Monday, June 3rd. Entombment is to follow at St. Gabriel’s Cemetery & Mausoleum.
In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation in Bernard’s name to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital; stjude.org. To leave a message of condolence, please visit Bernard’s memorial tribute page at www.HolmdelFuneralHome.com
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