Captain James J. Redican
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AGE: 92 • Toms River
Captain James J. "Jim" Redican, formerly for Belmar, New Jersey and longtime parishioner of Ascension Roman Catholic Church of Bradley Beach, passed away at the home of his nephew, Thomas Brady, with whom he had resided for the past two years in Toms River, NJ. He was the last surviving member of his immediate family. Born on September 18, 1921 to Irish parents, Michael John and Bridget Agnes (McGurrin) Redican, in the Bronx, he was a 1935 graduate of the Immaculate Conception Grammar School in the Bronx and a 1939 graduate of the LaSalle Academy in Manhattan.
Following graduation from LaSalle Academy, Jim joined the US Navy, where he was stationed at Pearl Harbor when the city was bombed on December 7, 1941. He escaped the bombing with light injuries and went on to honorably serve in the US Navy for four more years on the Pacific Front during World War II. He always considered himself blessed that he had managed to survive the bombing of Pearl Harbor as well as the sinking of the USS Helena on July 6, 1943 during the Battle of Kula Gulf. He joined the crew of the USS Radford when it picked up survivors from the USS Helena. He would be transferred to the USS Houston for the remainder of the war.
Upon returning to civilian life, he worked for a number of years on staff at the Chrysler Building in Manhattan. In 1951, he returned to sea. Over the next several years, he would achieve his license as a Master. The position of a Master (aka Captain) is the highest position one can achieve on a cargo ship. His career would take him throughout many parts of the world, namely, Japan, Korea, India, Iraq, Iran, Egypt, South Africa, and most European and North and South American port cities. As a talented Master, he often found himself in the role of troubleshooter for the various cargo lines that he worked for during his career. Each of these companies looked to him to assist them in making the ships he served on profitable. Jim was also a member of the International Organization of Masters, Mates & Pilots (AFL-CIO).
Retiring in 1975, he obtained his Bachelor of Arts in 1979 majoring in French at Fordham University in Manhattan. While at Fordham, he studied at the Siovonne in Paris. During his retirement, he continued to travel the world with his late companion, Ruth Rugge. Together, they traveled to Norway, Alaska, Hawaii and the Caribbean, often enjoying reunions of the USS Helena throughout his retirement years. He was an avid reader and could often be found with several books surrounding him. He also had a great interest and truly enjoyed following the stock market. Jim was a longtime volunteer at Tower Lodge in Wall where he would assist the staff with feeding the patients and keeping them company. He will be long remembered for his participation in the Monmouth University French Club and the New York Maritime Association.
Jim was predeceased by his parents; 2 sisters: Mary Huston and Elizabeth Brady-Waters; and 3 brothers: Michael, John and Thomas.
Surviving are his nieces and nephews: Thomas Brady and his wife Andrea, Michael Huston and his wife Mary, Eleen Redican, Marie Redican, Raymond Huston, Mary Lou Duke, and many great-nieces and nephews.
A Mass of Christian burial will be held under the direction of D'Elia Funeral Home, Lakewood on Friday at 10:30AM at St. Luke's RC Church, Toms River. Burial will immediately follow at St. Joseph Cemetery, Toms River. A gathering will take place at the funeral home on Friday before Mass at 9:15AM. For more information, or to post a tribute online, please visit www.delia funeralhome.com.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project, P.O. Box 758517, Topeka, Kansas 66675 -OR- www.woundedwarriorproject.org.
Published in Asbury Park Press on Apr. 23, 2014