Obituaries for 17 April 2024

Marion R. Stepanian

Marian R. Stepanian, a lifelong Kearny resident, died peacefully at home on April 14, 2024.

She was 95.

Visiting will be Friday, April 19, 2024, at the Armitage & Wiggins Funeral Home in Kearny from 3 until 7 p.m. Her prayer service will begin at 5:30 p.m. Relatives and friends are invited back to the funeral home Saturday at 9:30 a.m. and we will leave shortly after 10 a.m. for Arlington Cemetery, Kearny.

Marion’s dad was an Armenian genocide survivor and safely settled in Kearny. Marion was a graduate of Rutgers University and enjoyed her career as a third-grade teacher at Roosevelt School for the Kearny Board of Education. She enjoyed attending both the Kearny Baptist Church and the Berea Baptist Church.

Daughter of the late Nishian and Rose (nee Gerahian) Stepanian, she is survived by her cousin Larry Gerahian and his family, and her dear friends the Ribeiro family and the Paszkiewicz family along with other cherished lifelong friends.

In lieu of flowers, kindly consider a donation to Berea Baptist Church, 219 Laurel Ave., Kearny, N.J. 07032, Walnut Baptist Church, 367 Walnut St., Newark, N.J. 07105 or St. Mary Armenia Apostolic Church, 200 W. Mt. Pleasant Ave., Livingston, N.J. 07039.

Maryann Bower (nee Henry)

Maryann Bower (nee Henry) of Harrison, formerly of East Newark, died Saturday, April 13, 2024, at University Medical Center, Newark, after a short illness.

She was 82.

The funeral will be conducted from the Mulligan Funeral Home, 331 Cleveland Ave., Harrison, on Wednesday, April 17, 2024 at 9:15 a.m. A funeral Mass will be celebrated at Holy Cross Church, Harrison, at 10 a.m. Her interment will follow in Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington.  Friends and relatives are invited to attend her viewing Wednesday morning after 8:45 a.m.

Born and raised in East Newark, Maryann lived in Harrison and East Newark for most of her life. She was a lifelong Parishioner of Holy Cross Church, Harrison.

She was predeceased by her parents Elvin Walter Sr. and Sarah Ann Henry (nee McBride), her brothers Elvin Jr. (Al), John, James, Richard, Raymond (Butch), William Henry and her sister Hazel. She is survived by her beloved children, Darlene Leiner, Robert Bower, Kimberly Bower, Daniel Bower and his loving wife Jackie, nine cherished grandchildren, 13 dear great-grandchildren and a sister, Gloria “Jean” Lombardo, along with being a loving aunt of many nieces and nephews.

Fond memories and expressions of sympathy may be shared at

Vito Salvatore Viscomi

Vito Salvatore Viscomi of Harrison died peacefully Saturday, April 13, 2024.

He was 55.

The funeral will be conducted from the Mulligan Funeral Home, 331 Cleveland Ave., Harrison, Thursday, April 18, 2024 at 9:15 a.m. A funeral Mass be celebrated at Holy Cross Church, Harrison, at 10 a.m.  His entombment will follow in Holy Cross Chapel Mausoleum, North Arlington.  Friends and relatives are invited to attend his visitation Wednesday, April 17, from 4 to 8 p.m. and Thursday morning after 8:45 a.m.

If you would like to read his complete obituary or send a condolence message to the family, please visit

In lieu of flowers, the family kindly requests donations to the American Psychiatric Association Foundation or Catholic Charities USA in care of the funeral home, in loving memory of Vito.

Shirley Norton

With loving hearts, we announce the passing of Shirley Norton (nee Mahoney).

Shirley died peacefully Friday, April 12, 2024, at Hackensack University Hospital surrounded by family.

Shirley was loved by many and enjoyed parties, going out to dinner and socializing and most of all, time spent with family.

She leaves behind her beloved husband of 57 years, George F. Norton. Together they shared their son, George F. Norton Jr., along with Shirley’s three children, Joseph Alexandrowicz, Cindy Petrenko and her husband Bohdan (Bobby) and Diann Schoendorf; her loving grandchildren Heather and her husband Anthony Ghibesi, Allyson, Kenneth, Robert Schoendorf and wife Sian, Bryan Schoendorf, Samantha and her husband Travis Pierce; great-grandchildren David, Andrew, Gianna, Sianna-Lee, Robert III, Frankie and Brayden.

Visiting was at the Armitage & Wiggins Funeral Home in Kearny. Mass was celebrated at Queen of Peace Church, North Arlington. Burial was in Holy Cross Cemetery, North Arlington.

Learn more about the writer ...

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.