Eugenia (“Jean”) O’Connor was born in Bronx, New York on July 23, 1930 and died on May 23, 2019. Jean was predeceased by her parents, Elizabeth and Anthony Saracino, her husband, Edward O’Connor, and her beloved brother Anthony (“Butch”) Saracino.
She is survived by her children, stepchildren and their spouses: Jean and Richard Haddad of West Caldwell; Helene and Rabbi David Rosenberg of Westbury, NY; Maria DeCaro and George Juchnevicius of Totowa; Maryann and Kevin Jones of Ramsey; Tara O’Connor of Lodi and her “adopted son” Dr. Michael Cali of Essex Fells.
She was the doting grandmother of 10 and beloved great-grandmother of 12.
She is also survived by her brother, Raymond Saracino, of Westfield, Massachusetts and her sister-in-law and brother-in-law, Elaine and Robert Schade of Simi Valley, California.
Jean was raised in Agawam, Massachusetts and moved to Passaic, New Jersey in 1952 with her first husband, Louis DeCaro. During her life, she also lived in Clifton, Caldwell and finally Cedar Grove. She thrived as a dedicated member of the Emergency Department at Passaic General Hospital where she worked for nearly 30 years. She was loved and respected by her colleagues, who affectionately called her “Momma Jean.”
Jean will be fondly remembered by all who knew her. She was a gregarious, no-nonsense woman and a gifted storyteller who could engage anyone in a conversation. She loved to cook, especially Italian food, and there was always room at her table and enough meatballs for family and friends. She was generous to a fault always willing to help anyone in need. Never hesitant to speak her mind, there were often great debates about anything and everything while gathered together.
She encouraged family get-togethers in Barnegat Light, on Long Beach Island, New Jersey, where she vacationed annually. She loved the beach and enjoyed having as many kids, grandkids, great-grandkids and friends there as the house could hold.
Jean spent the last seven years of her life at St. Joseph’s Healthcare & Rehab Center (formerly St. Vincent’s) in Cedar Grove. Her family would like to express their sincere thanks and appreciation for the kindness and loving care she received from the nurses and staff.
Her family takes comfort in knowing that she is in a better place now, watching over all of us, while stirring up a heavenly pot of sauce for the angels.
The funeral service will be held on Tuesday, May 28, 2019 at the Church of the Immaculate Conception in Montclair, New Jersey. There will be a visitation at the church starting at 9AM prior to the 10AM mass.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to The Alzheimer’s Association by sending a check to the Greater New Jersey Chapter of the Alzheimer's Association, 23 Vreeland Road, Suite 105, Florham Park, NJ 07932 or online: https://www.alznj.org/get-involved/donate. Alternatively, donations can be made to St. Joseph’s Healthcare & Rehab Center by sending a check to 315 E. Lindsley Rd., Cedar Grove, NJ 07009 or online: https://givetostjosephs.org