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Kellerk, James J. April 21, 1930 - May 17, 2024

James John Kellerk, 94, died on May 17 th , surrounded by family, in Hackettstown, NJ. James and his wife, Mary Anne were residents of Mountainside NJ for 40 years where they raised their three children prior to moving to their retirement home in Belvidere, NJ and then finally to Hackettstown NJ.

James was born on April 21, 1930 at his home in North Plainfield, NJ. James was predeceased by his wife, Mary Anne who died in 2021. He is survived by his three children: Anne Cwieka (Kenneth) of Hackettstown, Maureen Bentz (Joseph) of Columbia, MD and James, Jr. of Pocono Pines, PA. James and Mary Anne relished spending time with their 8 grandchildren: Daniel Cwieka (wife Kaitlyn), Justin Cwieka (wife Sydney), Meghan Bentz, Joseph Bentz Jr. (wife Sydney), Kelly Bentz, Catherine Bentz, James John Kellerk III (Jack) and Kate Kellerk. James is also predeceased by two sisters, Eleanor and Margaret and his brother Robert. James is also survived by numerous nieces and nephews who adored both Jim and Mary Anne.

After graduating from North Plainfield High School, James went to work at the Port Authority of NY and NJ in 1949 where he spent his entire career until retiring in 1987. During his early years with the Port Authority, he attended New York University where he earned a BS in Accounting and a Master’s degree from the Stern School of Business. In his nearly 40 years with the Port
Authority, Jim progressed from mailroom clerk to Executive. Jim’s career started at the Port Authority headquarters, before moving to the World Trade Center when it opened in 1973. In the last decade of his career, Jim was responsible for leasing World Trade Center office space to large national and international companies.

James was very proud of founding the CYACS (Catholic Young Adult Club of Somerset) in 1957 where he met his wife and made lifelong friends. James and Mary Anne married in 1961. A marriage lasting 60 wonderful years until Mary Anne’s death in 2021. The family enjoyed many years vacationing at their home at Lake Naomi in the Pocono Mountains, and Lake Naomi was Jim’s happy place where he could relax and spend time with Mary Anne and their entire family.

James was very active and had broad interests. He served as Warren County Court Mediation professional, County Republican Committee Member, a tutor with Belvidere School System, Recreation Commission Member/Chair, and after his retirement, enjoyed other sales and entrepreneurial adventures all while remaining the biggest supporter of his wife, children, and grandchildren.

James was a lifelong devoted Catholic, and a devoted son, husband, father and grandfather who always put everyone before himself. He will be remembered for his generosity and congeniality and be missed by all who ever met him.​

Friends are invited to join family on Thursday, May 23rd from 4-8 PM at Cochran Funeral Home in Hackettstown. Mass of Christian burial will take place on Friday May 24th at 10:30 AM at Our Lady of Perpetual Help Roman Catholic Church in Bernardsville. Interment will follow in Holy Cross Cemetery, Basking Ridge, NJ. The family invites friends to join at a luncheon to follow. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Friendship Fund at Heath Village, 451 Schooley’s Mountain Road, Hackettstown, NJ 07840.


  1. REPLY
    Annie and Glenn says

    Always thinking of others with kindness, compassion and wisdom. You will live on through your amazing children and grandchildren and the many others whose lives you have touched.

  2. REPLY
    Mindy Wyker says

    So sorry to hear about your Dad he was a wonderful person. I left Heath Village and I miss so many residents that I had transported to many places, we had a lot of good conversations on some of our rides. I will miss him also sending my condolences to the entire family.

  3. REPLY
    Steve & Bonnie Hannon says

    Our deepest condolences to the Kellerk family. Your Mom and Dad are back together now looking down upon you all. Have so many fond memories of Lake Naomi seeing you all together which they always cherished. Always in your hearts forever. Love, Steve & Bonnie Hannon

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