Obituaries for 9 March 2016

Edward P. Orzechowski

Edward P. Orzechowski passed away suddenly at his home on Feb. 28. He was 54. Born in Kansas, he lived in Dunellen and Union before moving to Florida in 2009. Visiting was at the Armitage & Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, on Thursday, March 3. Relatives and friends attended a funeral Mass at St. Ann Roman Catholic Church, 32 Main St., Hampton, on Friday, March 4. Burial followed in the churchyard cemetery.

“Eddie O” graduated from St. Joseph High School in Metuchen. He was a very talented, trained artist. He had a passion for hockey and loved to play and coach. He currently was creative director for the Chumney & Associates advertising agency.

He is survived by his former wife but loving friend for life Denise Terrezza. He cherished his children Alana, Dana and Edward III. He was the dear brother of Gloria Phythian, Patti Moffa, Michael Orzechowski and Ted Orzechowski. He is also survived by his in-laws Anthony and Nancy Terrezza along with their family.

Craig Andrew Heins

Craig Andrew Heins passed away at the age of 60. He died quietly at home, in Clermont, Fla., on Feb. 21, after battling pancreatic cancer.   Craig was the devoted husband to Emily, loving father to Christopher, and beloved brother to Charles and wife Barbara, Cheryl and husband John. He was an uncle to Chason and several nieces and nephews on his wife’s side, as well as brother-in law to Miriam and Peter and Diana, as well as a friend to many.

Craig was born in Newark, moved to Kearny as a young boy where he attended Lincoln Junior High and Kearny High. He played football all through high school. He had a real love for the game. He graduated in 1974. He attended Kean University, graduating with honors. He was a CPA, specializing in the auditing of many New Jersey banks and financial institutions.

He lived in West Orange for several years, before retiring to Florida In June 2014, after his son Christopher graduated from West Orange High School.  He loved Florida and enjoyed his short time there.

He was a real Disney World fan, and living only 30 minutes from the park, spent a lot of time there and enjoyed attending many of their concerts.

Craig was a wonderful husband, father, brother and friend to many. He was loved by all who knew him and will be greatly missed.

Donations may be made in Craig’s name to either the American Cancer Society and/or the Cornerstone Hospice Foundation in Tavares, Fla.

Craig’s sister, Cheryl Grafje, offered this personal tribute: “Craig was my brother, best friend and confidant. My heart is broken in a million pieces. My life has been changed forever. Life without him has left a huge void and will never be the same again. I will miss his wonderful sense of humor, and loving and caring nature. I loved / love him more than anyone could possibly love another.  One of God’s greatest gifts is the gift of memory and I have many wonderful memories to sustain me.

“He was taken from us much too soon. Although he is no longer here in the physical sense, he will always be with me spiritually, and will walk with me always. He dwells in that special place in my heart reserved just for him!

I love you, baby, your loving sister.”

Beverly Lynn Albanese

Beverly Lynn Albanese, of Harrison, entered into eternal rest on Tuesday, March 1, surrounded by her loving family.   She was 67.

Private funeral services were under the direction of the Mulligan Funeral Home, Harrison.   Her cremation was private.

To send condolences to her family, please visit

Born and raised in Newark, Beverly lived most of her life in Harrison.  She worked for the Dominick V. Daniels U.S. Post Office, Kearny, as a postal worker for 20 years, retiring in 2014.  Prior to that, she worked as a waitress for many years.   In her spare time, she enjoyed playing cards and trips to Atlantic City.

Predeceased by her husband Angelo (1991), Beverly is survived by her loving children, Jerry Alberti and his wife, Michele, Angelo and his wife Christine, George and his wife Danielle and Gia and her husband Raul Branco, her devoted stepsons Andrew and James Albanese,  cherished grandchildren Michael, Amanda, Angela, Jerry, Taylor, Andrew, Zachary, Isabella, Jolie, Gianna, Angelo, Sara and Isabella, dear siblings, Jane Ross, Edward Raimo and Phylis Jarmolowich (deceased), and her caring sister-in-law Adele Albanese.   She is also survived by her dear friends Sadie Gallacher, Glen Craig and many nieces, nephews and cousins.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be sent to the Wounded Warrior Project, 4899 Belfort Road, Suite 300, Jacksonville, Fla., in loving memory of Beverly.

Bess Efstathiou

Bess Efstathiou, 86, formerly of Kearny, and most recently of Swarthmore, Pa., passed into eternal rest on Feb. 25.  Visitation will take place Thursday, March 10, from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m., at the Armitage & Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny.  Funeral services will take place on Friday, March 11, at 10 a.m., at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, 721 Rahway Ave., Union, with burial immediately following in Fairview Cemetery, Westfield.  In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory to St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, Union, are appreciated.

Mrs. Efstathiou spent her life committed to education, the arts, and her family.  She was born in Pennsylvania to immigrant parents and worked the second shift in the family business from the age of 10. After high school, she attended the Teachers’ College at St. Basil Academy and graduated with a certificate to teach Greek.  The following September, she returned to St. Basil Academy to teach young, orphaned children who were sheltered by the Academy.

It was then at St. Basil that she met the love of her life, Athan, and her best friend of almost seven decades, Callie, of Nova Scotia, Canada.  Athan and Bess left the Academy to pursue higher education and continued a long distance relationship for six years.  Studying by day and working at the family business at night, she financed her education and graduated from Wilkes College (Pa.), while Athan completed his physics studies at Columbia University (N.Y.). They married and made their happy home in Kearny.   Bess pursued a career teaching science and spent the majority of her working life in the Belleville Public School system at School No. 5, the junior high, and the high school as teacher and department head.   She continued her formal education at night, earning a master’s degree at Montclair State University in 1980.  In 1994, she retired as the district’s science supervisor.

Mrs. Efstathiou applied her knowledge of pedagogy in every facet of her life.   For a decade, she was the director of the Sunday School at St. Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church in Newark.   She served on advisory committees for the education of children at St. Basil Academy, providing expertise in science curricula and implemented — as she had in Belleville in the early 1980s – in the use of the first microcomputers, along with accompanying professional development.  She volunteered with the church youth group, coaching them in drama, dancing, and performance.   Together with Athan, she worked on many charitable works including the Elytis Chair (Rutgers University) endowment fund and the Greek Schools of St. Demetrios (Union) and St. Nicholas/St. Demetrios (Newark).  She was an active member in the Philoptochos and the Daughters of Penelope.   In her spare time, she became a docent at the Newark Museum providing tours to groups: a dream nurtured and realized from a lifetime of world travels and regular museum-hopping with family and friends.

She was predeceased by her husband Athan, three brothers and sister Grace.  She will be missed by her close family:  daughter Penny (Kevin), grandson Athan, nephew Thomas (Fla.), and the many other godchildren, cousins, nieces, nephews, family, and friends across the U.S. and abroad with whom she maintained loving relationships across the miles.

Stanley Pogorzelski

Stanley T. Pogorzelski, 86, of East Newark, passed away suddenly on Thursday, March 3.

The funeral was Monday, March 7, from the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny. A funeral Mass was offered at St. Stephen’s Church, Kearny. Entombment followed in Holy Cross Chapel Mausoleum, North Arlington. Relatives and friends were invited to visit at the funeral home on Sunday. Condolences and memories may be shared at

Stan was born and raised in Harrison and had lived in East Newark since 1956.

In 1947 he earned First Team All State honors as soccer goalie at Harrison High School, and later would be inducted into the school’s athletic hall of fame.

After graduation, he served in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean Conflict.

Mr. Pogorzelski worked for the Passaic Valley Sewage Commission for 14 years retiring in 1995. Prior to that, he worked at Otis Elevator in Harrison for 20 years.

He enjoyed calling Bingo at Holy Cross Church in Harrison.

Stanley is survived by his wife, Theresa (nee Miller); three daughters, Lisa Anders (Barry), Karol Cedeno and Lynn Michaels (Andy); son-in-law,  Kevin Barber; siblings, Mary McArtney, Margaret Riley and Vincent Pogorzelski; eight grandchildren, Jason and Lauren Anders, Kevin and Jaclyn Barber and Ryan, Carly, Jack and Adam Michaels; and two great-granddaughters,  Francesca and Alayna Anders.

He was predeceased by his daughter, Susan Barber; son- in- law Alex Cedeno; and two brothers, Walter and Chester Pogorzelski.

In lieu of flowers, donations to the American Cancer Society at  would be greatly appreciated.

Joseph P. Slavik

Joseph P. Slavik 84, of Kearny, died on March 3.

Visiting was at the Armitage & Wiggins Funeral Home, 596 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, on Monday, March 7.  A Mass of Christian Burial will be officiated on Tuesday, March 8, at 10 a.m. at Our Lady of Sorrows Church, Kearny. Interment will be in Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington.

Born in Newark, Mr. Slavik lived in Kearny all his life.

He was an ironworker for various companies in northern New Jersey for over 50 years, retiring at the age of 80.  He was an usher and parishioner at Our Lady of Sorrows Church, Kearny.  He was a member of the Kearny Zoning Board for over 40 years and was a member of the Democratic Club of Kearny.  He also served in The U.S. Army during the Korean Conflict.

Sixty-one years ago, he married his sweetheart, the former Joan E. Rainey.  He was the father of Nancy DiGiacomo (Santo), Jean Portaro (Frank), Joseph Slavik, Jr. (Nancy) and Carolyn Galati (Greg); brother of Pauline Slavik and Jane Lytikanin. He is also survived by nine grandchildren and eight great-grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations to The St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital would be appreciated.

Catherine T. Taylor     

Catherine T. Taylor (nee Kopp), 83, passed away on Friday, March 4.

The funeral will be from the Thiele-Reid Family Funeral Home, 585 Belgrove Drive, Kearny, on Thursday, March 10, at 8:30 a.m. A funeral Mass will be offered at St. Stephen’s Church, Kearny, at 9:30 a.m. Interment will follow at Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington. Relatives and friends are invited to visit at the funeral home on Wednesday, March 9, from 2 to 4 and 7 to 9 p.m. Condolences and memories may be shared at

Catherine was born in Hillside and lived in North Arlington before moving to Kearny in 1966.

She worked at the Board of Consumer Affairs, retiring in 1998. Prior to that, she worked at the Essex College of Business. She also was a teacher at Kearny High School from 1962 until 1966.

For many years she corresponded with inmates at the Green Haven Correctional Facility in Beekman, N.Y., about writing, English Literature and poetry. She was also a member of Rosary Altar Society at St. Stephen’s Church.

She is survived by one son, Greg Taylor.

Catherine was predeceased by her husband, Thomas Taylor, and her sister Doris Kopp.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions to St. Hubert’s Animal Welfare Center at; to the Rett Syndrome Foundation at or to a charity of your choice.

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Kevin A. Canessa Jr. is the editor of and broadcaster at The Observer, a place where he has served on and off since 2006. He is responsible for the editorial content of the newspaper and website, the production of the e-Newspaper, writing several stories per week (including the weekly editorial), conducting live broadcasts on Facebook Live, including a weekly recap of the news — and much more behind the scenes. Between 2006 and 2008, he introduced the newspaper to its first-ever blog — which included podcasts, audio and video. Originally from Jersey City, Kevin lived in Kearny until 2004, lived in Port St. Lucie. Florida, for four years until February 2016 and in March of that year, he moved back to West Hudson to return to The Observer full time. Click Here to send Kevin an email.