Robert L. Bechner

Robert L. Bechner, 72, of Palisades, NY, passed away on Wednesday, September 15, 2021.  Survived by his daughters, Erin Bechner and Lori Mastrogiacomo; his brother, Br. Anthony J. “Buddy” Bechner; a grandson and his ex-wife, Roanne Fogle.

Bob graduated from Iona College in 1971. He was a police officer for the Port Authority and retired as Lieutenant after over 30 years of dedicated service. He was a member of the Port Authority Lieutenants Benevolent Association and the Drum Major for the PAPD Pipe Band.  A devout Catholic, Bob was an active parishioner of Our Lady of the Sacred Heart RC Church where he was a member of the parish council.

Visiting hours are Tuesday, September 21, 2021 from 4-8 PM at Pizzi Funeral Home, 120 Paris Ave, Northvale, NJ (201-767-3050). A Funeral Mass will be celebrated Wednesday, September 22, 2021 at 10:30 AM at Our Lady of the Sacred Heart Church, Tappan, NY.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Bob’s memory may be made to United Hospice of Rockland,

Thomas J. O’Connell, Jr.

Thomas J. O’Connell, Jr., 84, of Tappan, New York, passed away on Saturday, September 11, 2021. 

Tom was born in New York City on March 24, 1937 to Thomas and Margaret (Clark) O’Connell. He grew up in Bayside and attended City College. Tom began his career working as a technician at Bell Laboratories. He then worked for AT&T, steadily advancing in management roles. After his retirement from AT&T, Tom worked for several years as a consultant for overseas satellites. 

In 1960, Tom married his beloved wife Beverly (nee Buchner). They met at a dance and were quite the rug cutters in their day. Tom was a devoted and steadfast husband, caring for Bev through many years of illness with Multiple Sclerosis. Together they had 4 children: Kathleen Maher, Brian O’Connell (partner Anne Starke), Suzanne Lucido (husband James) and Kerry Castro (husband Noel). He was especially proud of his grandchildren Kelly Yam (husband Philip), Jenna Maher, Rachel O’Connell, Alyssandra O’Connell, Thomas Lucido, Matthew Lucido, and Emma Castro, and he treasured the time he spent with them. Tom is survived by his dear sister, Maureen Wiley, and was predeceased by his beloved sister, Anne Wall. Tom is also survived by many other loving nieces, nephews, relatives and friends, including Eddie McLaughlin, his best friend of over 80 years.

Tom was a man of quiet integrity – tall, not just in stature at six-foot-four, but in values and honor. He had a sharp, inquisitive mind and a great sense of humor, yet he was never above telling corny jokes. He respected nature and was an avid bird watcher. He loved woodworking in his basement shop and created many beautiful pieces of furniture for his family. Tom enjoyed traveling and made certain to explore as far and wide as possible while Bev was still able. His scenic photographs captured many special places and memories. Tom was the anchor of his family, full of quiet and astounding strength to the very end. 

Memorial Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, September 18, 2021 at 11 AM at St. Anthony’s RC Church, Northvale, New Jersey. A casual reception will follow at the Lucidos’ home at 35 Germonds Road in New City, New York. In lieu of flowers, donations in Tom’s memory may be made to the National Park Foundation, Rockland Audubon Society, or the National Multiple Sclerosis Society

Cecilia Santiago

Cecilia Santiago (nee Gonzalez), 87, of Cliffside Park, NJ, passed away on Thursday, September 9, 2021. Loving wife for 56 years of Jorge Santiago. Beloved mother of George Santiago and his wife Rose Gramuglia-Santiago of Norwood, NJ and stepmother of George and Gloria Santiago of Fairfield CA and the late Janet Santiago-Frajdenreich.  Devoted and cherished grandmother of Hailey and Natalie Santiago and Delia Liza Santiago-Materese, her husband Chris and their children Ruby and Janet Materese . Loving sister of Victor Gonzalez (Anita) of Florida; Gabrielle (Chabella) Gonzales of Spain, Antonia Gonzalez – Santamaria (Julian) of Spain, Lines (Raul) Gutierrez of Spain, the late Beatrice, Candido Gonzalez, Aurelio Gonzalez and Tina Fernaldez-Cos Cherished and proud Godmother of Dr. Henry Fernandez-Cos, MD (Marlen) of North Bergen, NJ  and Dr. Carmen Klohe (Egon) of Fort Lee, NJ and many nieces, nephews and grand- nieces and grand-nephews.   

Cecelia was born in Spain and moved to Cuba in her early teens and worked for the American Embassy in Cuba until moving to the United States in the early 1960’s.  Affectionately called “Tata” by her adoring family, Cecilia loved to shower everyone with gifts, hugs and kisses.  From their early days in Cuba when Henry and Carmen were children to Henry’s years in medical school, and Carmen in graduate school, Tata provided unconditional love, support and encouragement.  Hailey and Natalie were the loves of her life.  She was beyond proud of them and never hesitated to let them know that she loved them beyond measure. Cecilia was the absolute most adoring and devoted mother and mother-in-law who made her children feel loved and cherished . 

 Our beloved Tata—mother, grandmother, Godmother, aunt, and friend will be greatly missed and her memory will forever be a great blessing to everyone that knew this amazing woman!

A Funeral Mass will be celebrated at Our Lady of Grace RC Church, Fairview on Monday, September 13, 2021 at 9:30 AM. Entombment will follow at Flower Hill Mausoleum, North Bergen, NJ.

Arrangements by Pizzi Funeral Home, Northvale, NJ.

Nicholas Langella

October 14, 1929-August 23,2021

Nicholas Langella, 91, formerly of Rockleigh, Northvale, and Old Tappan, passed away on August 23, 2021. He was predeceased by his beloved wife Julia (nee Volpe), his brother Sabatino and his sisters Roseanne and Lucille. He is survived by his sister Josephine, sons Frank and James, grandchildren Michelle and Nicholas, and great grandchildren Victoria and Julia.  As per his wishes, funeral services were private.

Nick was a World War II U.S. Navy Veteran and received the honor of a Victory Medal.  He was stationed off the coast of Italy and in the U.S.  He received an honorable discharge in 1948 and settled into civilian life.

A hard worker his whole life, he was the VP of logistics at Holiday Fair, a handbag manufacturer in Jersey City.  Upon retirement, he purchased the former Gulf station in Norwood and was a fixture there for many years.  Many people knew they could rely on Nick to help out in any emergency.

Dedicated to public service, Nick served as a Councilman in Old Tappan and then Rockleigh for 18 years.  He served the Borough of Rockleigh in various capacities for 27 years.  He was a member of the Sewer Authority, volunteer fire department, Planning  Board, Council and ultimately Mayor.  He was proud to have been inducted into the NJ Hall of Fame for Volunteer Service.

In 2002, Nick was elected Mayor of Rockleigh as a write-in candidate at the age of 73.  He served 2 terms.  He remained an active member of the Northern Valley Mayors’ Association for many years, often reaching across the aisle to promote cooperation and shared services among the towns.

The residents of Spectrum for Living held a special place in Nick’s heart.  He played a key role in establishing the Rockleigh location and it was one of his proudest achievements.

He earned the nickname “Saint Nick” as he was Santa for decades to the children of Rockleigh and the residents of Spectrum.  He used to arrive at the Borough Hall for the town Holiday party on a horse drawn antique fire carriage dressed as Santa to the delight of children and adults alike.  He played Santa for the Spectrum residents for the final time at the age of 90 years old.

Those who wish to honor Nick may make a donation in his memory to

Joseph Shamoun

Joseph Shamoun, 86, of Tenafly, passed away at home surrounded by his loving family on Saturday, September 4, 2021. Beloved husband of Mary. Proud father of Kathy Shamoun, Lena Shamoun and Daniel Shamoun. Cherished grandfather of Ronin and Bowie.  

If you were lucky enough to know this bright soul you were touched by his boundless heart. Joseph knew how to love. He loved people –all people. He cared deeply for friends, his employees, people he never met – distant relatives of friends, anyone struggling under oppression. He loved life and nature and making things grow with his tender attention. He arrived to America in 1967 and grew a business, never compromising his old-world quality in his craft. With his kind nurturing he grew herbs, flowers, fruits and vegetables in his garden sanctuary. He grew a family. He especially loved his family. He died peacefully in his home, knowing he was loved, with a hint of a smile on his face.

A Funeral Service will be held at St. Mark’s Syriac Orthodox Cathedral, 55 W. Midland Ave., Paramus, NJ on Tuesday, September 7, 2021 at 10:30 AM.

Arrangements by Pizzi Funeral Home, Northvale,

Catherine Croce

Catherine Croce (nee Ricci), 93, of Norwood, passed away on Monday, August 30, 2021. Beloved of the late Peter Croce. Loving mother of John. Predeceased by eight brothers and sisters.

Visitation will be Friday, September 3, 2021 from 12 – 1 PM at Pizzi Funeral; Home, 120 Paris Ave, Northvale (201-767-3050). A funeral service will be held at 1 PM at the funeral home with burial to follow at Rockland Cemetery, Sparkill, NY.

Olga Jimenez

Olga Jimenez passed away peacefully on Sunday August 29, 2021 at the age of 101 at 6:15 AM. Respected and revered by many as their “Abuela,” she remained devoted to the Holy Trinity and the Blessed Virgin Mary and hoped to rejoin her deceased husband, siblings and other loved ones.  Born on December 1, 1919, Olga was the first of 10 children of Felix de la Torre and Ofelia Nordelo, enjoying her childhood on their farm outside of Moron within the province of Camaguey, Cuba.  

As an adult, Olga and her husband, Juan Jimenez, left Castro’s Cuba in 1959 with their 14-year old daughter, Nancy. They resided in Manhattan, where Nancy soon met and later married her husband, James Patrick Towey, in 1964 at age 20.  After being widowed on June 9, 1970, Olga lived most of her remaining life within the growing family of her daughter and son-in-law.  That family ultimately included her three grandchildren; James Judge Towey, Michelle Lee Pizzi and her husband Robert, and John-Paul Towey and his wife Patricia, followed  by nine great-grandchildren; Tyler & Jaclyn Pizzi; Kyle, Brooke, Madison and Connor Towey, Taylor, Penelope and Dylan Towey.  Olga is also survived by many nieces and nephews all who she adored dearly.

Like Olga, her siblings also eventually left Castro’s Cuba to reside first in NYC before moving to NJ and then FL.   Olga is survived by two brothers, Rodolfo de la Torre and Esteban de la Torre, and predeceased by brothers, Felix de la Torre, Rolando de la Torre and Armando de la Torre, and sisters Aida Morales, Ofelia Dolores Gonzalez, Luz Marina Garcia and Zoila Fernandez.

Visiting hours are Friday, September 3, 2021 from 3-5 PM at Pizzi Funeral Home, 120 Paris Avenue, Northvale (201-767-3050). A Funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, September 4, 2021 at 10 AM at Our Lady Victories RC Church, Harrington Park, NJ with interment to follow at St. Raymond’s Cemetery, Bronx, NY. 

In lieu of flowers, family & friends are asked to consider donating in Olga’s memory to Covenant House or any charity of their choice.     

Phyllis Lorraine Mockler

Phyllis Lorraine Mockler, 86, of Elmwood Park, NJ, passed away at home on Wednesday, August 25, 2021. Beloved daughter of the late Robert Mockler Sr. and Hazel Mockler (nee Zoller). Loving sister of Robert Mockler, Jr.(deceased) and wife Gisela Fisher Mockler, Richard Mockler (deceased), Arthur (deceased) and wife Janice Mockler, and Ronald and wife Barbara (deceased) Mockler. Cherished aunt of Todd Mockler (deceased), Jeffery Mockler (deceased), Tara Mockler Snow, Kristel-Lynn Mockler, Michelle Mockler and Robert Mockler.

Burial will be at George Washington Memorial Park, Paramus, on Friday, August 27, 2021 at 1:30 PM.

Those who wish may make a donation in Phyllis’ memory to the charity of their choice.

Christopher J. DiStasio, III

Christopher J. DiStasio III recently passed at the age of 64.  Cherished son of Barbara Camhi & Christopher J. DiStasio Jr. Loving brother of Donna & Bill Meringer, Michelle & Anthony DiStasio & Diane Beckwermert. Grandson to the late: Anna & Joseph Palma, Mildred & Christopher J. DiStasio Sr. Dear nephew of Jackie & Eugene DiStasio, Debbie & Jimmy Mizeski & Ann Lee & Karl Dettloff. Beloved uncle to Peter D. Beckwermert, Emily Beckwermert ,  Lisa & Santiago Wer, William & Jackie Meringer, Cynthia Meringer, Anthony DiStasio Jr. & Richie Benites and great-uncle to 6, soon to be 7. Also survived by many loving cousins and dear friends.

Chris started playing golf at an early age, and won numerous tournaments.  Chris loved to advise other golfers on how to improve their game.  He was always happy and lived life to the fullest. Chris was a 3rd Degree member of the St. Thomas More Council 2188 in Westwood.

Special thanks to the Carnazza family & Chris’ many friends for your prayers & support at this difficult time.

Mass will be held at:
St Joseph’s Catholic Church,
120 Hoboken Road,
East Rutherford, New Jersey
Saturday August 28, 2021 at 12:00 PM

Knights of Columbus
40 Crest Street

Westwood, NJ
Tuesday August 31, 2021 from 7-9 PM

Lilia E. Marrero

Lilia E. Marrero (nee Lopez), 78, of Northvale, passed away on Monday, August 23, 2021. Beloved wife of Tony. Cherished mother of Debra Swerdlow, Luis Marrero and wife Kristina and David Marrero and wife Jaime. Proud grandmother of Matthew, Kenny, Josh and Danny. Dearest sister of Luis Lopez and wife Luisa and Ruben Lopez and wife Aida.

Lilia was a devoted wife, mother and grandmother. In addition to being a loving and dedicated grandmother, she loved gardening and reading a good book.  She will be dearly missed.

Visitation will be Thursday, August 26 from 4-7 PM at Pizzi Funeral Home, 120 Paris Ave, Northvale (201-767-3050).

Those who wish may make a donation in Lilia’s memory to St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital,