John E. Buckley, 84, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, October 19, 2022, at St. Peter’s University Hospital, New Brunswick, NJ, surrounded by his loving family.
John was born in Jersey City, NJ on February 13, 1938, to John and Margaret Buckley, one of 14 children.
John grew up in Jersey City and went on to attend high school at Seton Hall Prep, where he proudly studied hard and played football. He took three buses to and from the Prep every day and spent his summers working at JRs in Seaside Heights in order to afford his bus fare and tuition. That is when he fell in love with the jersey shore. He made friendships at the prep that lasted his lifetime. Seton Hall Prep was where it all started for him. In 2007, he was inducted into the Seton Hall Prep Hall of Fame with his 1955 football team. This was one of the proudest moments of his life. It had such a tremendous impact on him, that he became involved in the SHP Hall of Fame Selection Committee and has been an active member since 2008.
He went to Seton Hall University where he studied theology and history and was on the diving team. He entered the Immaculate Conception Seminary in Ramsey NJ, however his stay in the Seminary was cut short because God then called him to a different vocation, family. He continued on to achieve multiple Master’s degrees at Columbia University; one in Greek and Roman Mythology, and one in Audiology, and Speech and Language Pathology. He had a love of knowledge and he always hungered to keep on learning throughout his life. His desire was endless. He loved languages, and took many extra classes in Latin, Greek, and Hebrew. He continued his studies to pursue a further degree at New York University in Audiology and Hearing Science.
His work was his passion. He started his career at Brooklyn Eye and Ear hospital, and soon after accepted a job at Overlook Hospital where he was Chief of the Department of Audiology and Speech Pathology. He published various swallowing papers and helped countless people. He was very active in the NY Audiology study group and went on to become President. He transitioned himself into the private practice sector of audiology, which was where his passions came alive. For the past 40 years, he was very involved in the UAW retiree program; he spent countless hours advocating and fighting for the hearing aid benefits of all past employees of Ford and General Motors. During his years with the UAW, he established lifelong friendships that went beyond the discussion of hearing issues. People would seek him out for advice and discussions, ranging anywhere from the planting of trees, politics, beach erosion, his family and various other colorful topics. But his favorite discussions centered around his family. He was the biggest cheerleader of his three daughters and seven grandchildren. He beamed when he spoke of them. His three daughters were the light of his life. Their accomplishments were what guided him daily. His greatest moments were on the fields and in the gyms watching his grandchildren excel in their respective sports. Up until a month prior to his death, he proudly attended UAW retiree meetings and couldn’t wait to meet and greet all of his peers. His passion for audiology and helping the hearing impaired was contagious. Then in 1995, his daughter Ali recognized that, and it led her to change her career path and pursue her Doctorate in Audiology. They proudly worked together for 25 years.
John met the love of his life, Ellen, at a Speech and Hearing convention in NY, and they were married several years later. They were happily married for 52 years. They lived and raised their three daughters in Scotch Plains, NJ. Because of his love of the shore, John and Ellen eventually purchased a second home (close to Seaside Heights), where they spent many happy years with family and friends and shared many cherished memories.
John is survived by his wife Ellen Buckley (Schwartz)and three beloved children: Ali Stahley and her husband Drew, Kristin O’Hara and her husband Chris, Shannon Sabol and her husband Tom. He was the brother of Joseph and Dennis Buckley, Carol Sullivan, Margaret De Flilippo, and Janet Scerbo. He also leaves behind his seven beloved grandchildren; Olivia and Cooper Stahley; Hudson, Rowan, and Harper O’Hara; Madelyn and Henry Sabol. He was also Uncle to many nieces and nephews and great nieces and nephews. He touched everyone’s heart.
He was predeceased by his brothers: Leo, Robert, Thomas, and Kenneth Buckley, and his sisters: Jacqueline Buckley, Patricia Kent, Alice Dunne, and Deborah Abeltin.
In lieu of flowers, the family is requesting that a donation be made to his High School Alma Mater, Seton Hall Prep. Donations can be made in two ways; via their website at https://www.shp.org/giving/make-a-gift as a Tribute Gift in Memory of John E. Buckley, or by mailing a check to Seton Hall Prep, 120 Northfield Ave, West Orange, NJ 07052. Please write “In Memory of John E. Buckley” on the memo line. He leaves behind a legacy not only with his family, but at Seton Hall Prep as well.
“Nemo dat quod non habet”
Relatives and friends are invited to visit at the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, NJ on Monday October 24 from 4 to 8 p.m. The Funeral Mass will be held in St. Patrick's Church of Jersey City, 492 Bramhall Ave, Jersey City, on Tuesday, October 25 at 11:00 a.m. Cremation will be private.