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Quinn, Frederick & Theresa

QuinnTerry1Frederick H. Quinn

June 4, 1934 - August 19, 2020

Frederick Quinn, known to his family as Fred or “Freddie”,  passed away peacefully on August 19, 2020 at Beth Israel Hospital in Newark with his son Martin, his son-in-law Rob, and good friend Gail, cousin to his wife Terry at his side.  Fred was born on June 4, 1934 near Jessup, Pennsylvania to Gertrude and Joseph Quinn.  He was the oldest of six children: his brothers Charles, Dennis, and Robert and sisters Nancy and Barbara would spend their summers at Chapman Lake with their Aunt Marion and her children, cousins Shelly and Judy, the Benowitzes, and grandparents throughout their childhood.

Fred was always known for his stories of family as well as stories of friends and acquaintances alike who shared their personal accounts of how they met.  Once the President of the Garden State Storytellers League, he always cherished the sentiment and emotional connection a good story could provide. His own story of how he met his wife of almost 51 years, Terry, was one of his favorites.  While serving as a priest for the Archdiocese of Newark, who delivered his sermons in Jersey City in both English and Spanish, he met Sister Ann Joseph, a Dominican nun who shared his passion for music, humor, and civil service. Meeting at a protest for low income housing in Newark, their shared ideals blossomed into a true friendship, the foundation for their marriage.

Fred has three loving children, Martin, Marisa, and Monica, and three grandchildren, Elliot, Ben, and Sofia, who always loved his sense of humor, call to activism, kind heart, and love of music. Always patient and kind, his connection with people extended into his work.  A vocational counselor at Kessler Institute for Rehabilitation for many years, Fred gave hope to many people who needed guidance and understanding at a time in their lives when they experienced transition and hardship.  Fred always helped people feel wanted and allowed them to recognize their true potential.  Jay Cupo, once a patient, and now a life-long friend, was one person who Fred helped along the way, and whose friendship he valued until his death.

There are so many things that could be said about Fred Quinn. He touched the lives of those he had met and really made everyone feel special, loved, and valued. His wife Terry, his children and grandchildren, brothers and sisters, good friend Loretta, and other family members and friends will feel an emptiness in his passing but will also share a bad joke, tell a story, sing a song, and fight for equal rights and justice as a testament to his legacy. Fred wouldn’t expect anything less.

Theresa "Terry" Marie Quinn

January 15, 1942 - May 10, 2022

Theresa Marie Quinn was born Theresa Marie Vertucci on January 15, 1942 to Tina and Joseph Vertucci in Jersey City. She was the oldest of five children: her twin brother and sister Elaine and Arthur, her brother Cono, and her baby sister, Janice. She was also very close with her cousin Gail, who was always like a sister to her. Terry was always very proud to say that she was like a mother to all of her siblings, and she carried that innate ability to care, nurture, and teach those around her throughout her life. At the age of 17, Terry entered the convent and became a Dominican nun in Verona, NJ. Known as Sister Ann Joseph, she started her lifelong career in education, eventually teaching in Jersey City for seven years.  She handled classes as large as 66 students at a time and managed to still reach her students under the most impossible of circumstances. This was a gift that lasted throughout her many years in education.

As a nun in the 60’s, she was also an activist and championed causes around her during a time where social change was imminent. She met Fred, then a priest in Jersey City, who held mass in both Spanish and English and lived in the community with his fellow priests, something that was not commonly done during that time. Fred and Terry met in a coffee line during a protest for low income housing and their relationship grew stronger with time. They shared a lot in common, and both opposed the restrictive positions of the church regarding many controversial issues of the period. They always placed importance on social issues, education, civil rights, and dedicated their lives to helping people in different capacities.

After leaving the church, Terry and Fred were married and had 3 children: Martin, Marisa, and Monica. When Monica was a baby, she went back to work as a teacher in Rahway, NJ. She taught first grade for most of her teaching career and teaching was truly her calling. She loved and cared for each student as though they were her own, and even many years later, students talk about her kindness and the impact she had on their lives. She even went back to school with her daughter Marisa to obtain her Master’s Degree in Education and Learning several years before her retirement. Though she suffered from Alzheimer’s towards the end of her years, her love for children never waned. She loved her grandson Elliot infinitely and loved reading him stories and sending him books as long as she was able. She also loved holding her granddaughter Sofia, and loved to buy her thrift store clothes, books and more books, and anything else she could find. She loved her grandson Ben, and always commented on his nice smile.  Her love for her children and grandchildren was evident throughout her entire life– even through her battle with Alzheimer’s, she never forgot their names.

She passed away peacefully on May 10, with her son, Martin, her daughter, Marisa, and her loving cousin, Gail, at her side. Terry also has many nieces and nephews, friends and colleagues that she leaves behind. She will be missed by so many, but it without question that she impacted not only the lives of her family, but also the lives of so many students who have had the privilege of having been taught by her at some point in their lives.

A natural burial will take place at The Rosemont Cemetery, 100 Kingwood Stockton Road, Rosemont, NJ 08556 at 12 NOON on Sunday, May 15, 2022.

In lieu of flowers, donations in Terry’s memory to First Friends or the Alzheimer’s Association would be greatly appreciated.

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Fred and Theresa Quinn's Story