Benedict L. DeFonzo


Benedict “Ben” DeFonzo, 78, of Island Heights, N.J., and Fort Myers, Fla., passed away peacefully on Friday, Oct. 7, 2016, at the University of Pennsylvania Hospital after fighting a courageous battle with Leukemia.

Ben was born to Angelina and Benedetto DeFonzo on May 20, 1938, in Jersey Shore.

Ben was a graduate of Jersey Shore High School, Class of 57 and Lock Haven University. Ben taught in the Jersey Shore School District several years, then moving on to Southern Regional High School, N.J., in 1964 and worked as Co-Director of Athletics until his retirement in 1999. He was Ocean County Athletic Director of the Year in 1997-98 and inducted into the Southern Regional Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007. He was a former chairman of the Island Heights planning board; a board member on the Cinnamon Cove Master Board; and an Island Heights Yacht club member. He was a life member of Jersey Shore Elks, No. 1057, for 53 years.

He was a loving husband to Elena and proud father of his two sons, David and Andrew (Amy). He was a grandfather to six wonderful grandchildren, Eliza, Emma, Ben, Ella, Maggie and Drew. He was predeceased by two brothers, Joseph and Anthony. He is survived by siblings, Frank DeFonzo (Marland), of Loyalsock Township, Alessandra (Eliz) Fowler, of Des Plaines, Ill., Caroline “Bess” Bamonte (Anthony), of Mattydale, N.Y. and many loving in-laws, nieces, nephews and friends.

Ben loved spending time with his family, playing tennis, enjoying boating and fishing and was an avid Penn State football fan.

Visitation was at the Anderson-Campbell Funeral Home, Toms River, N.J., on Thursday, Oct. 13 from 4-8 p.m. Funeral Mass was held at St. Gertrude’s Catholic Church, Island Heights, N.J., on Friday, Oct. 14 at 10 a.m. with the Rev. Fr. Jermone Guld officiating.

Submitted by family.