Joseph "Joe" Chencharik, 89, of Cranford, NJ passed away on Tuesday, November 3, 2015 in the loving care of his family and the staff of Homeside Hospice and Cranford Health Extended Care Center.
Joe was born and grew up in the "Down Neck" section of Newark where he attended Hawkins Street School and East Side High School before leaving to enlist in the Army during World War II. He served in Company A, 1276th Engineer C Battalion. Seriously injured while invading Germany, Joe received the Purple Heart for the courage and bravery he displayed during battle. Once home again, Joe met and married Doris Curcio, the love of his life. Together they happily raised their daughter, Therese, in Maplewood, NJ where they lived for over 25 years.
Joe was employed as a truck driver for Ashland Chemical for over 30 years. Before retiring, Joe won Ashland's truck driving rodeo held in Ohio and drove 1,000,000 miles without an accident . Once retired, he and Doris moved to Brick, NJ where they created beautiful memories with their grandchildren and family. Joe loved to "tinker" and could fix anything. He loved to garden, and was legendary for his beautiful lawn. He enjoyed the company of his family and friends and hosted memorable barbecue parties where he would always perform some kind of magic trick for the children or adults. In his later years, Joe became a "whiz" at solving Sudoku puzzles.
Joe is predeceased by his wife Doris and his five sisters and four brothers, which included his best friend and brother Andy and nephew, Hughie. Joe is survived by his daughter, Therese and son-in-law, Kevin Koellner of Cranford, and his grandchildren Scott and Arlene Koellner, Connor Koellner and Courtney Koellner, and his great-grandson Martin Joseph, all of Boston.
A private family visitation, life celebration, and ceremony will be held on Friday, Nov. 13 at 10:00 AM at GrayMemorial Funeral Home in Cranford, NJ and then Joe will be laid to rest with his loving wife at St. Joseph's Cemetery in Tom's River. No flowers please. Donations in Joe's name can be made to St. Hubert's Animal Welfare Center of Madison NJ or Homeside Hospice of Clark, NJ.