Melvin "Mel" J. Akerley
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AGE: 84 • Brick
Melvin "Mel" J. Akerley, Jr; 84, of Brick, passed away peacefully on June 18, 2013 at his home. Born in Staten Island, NY to the late Melvin and Florence Akerley, he represented McKee Vocational High School of Staten Island, in the 1945 American Legion Oratorical Contest, where he took first place. Mr. Akerley was a proud American, who went on to serve his country in the United States Navy and attended Electrician Mates School in Great Lakes, Il and served on the U.S.S. Bushnell during World War II and was awarded the World War II Victory Metal.
Melvin was a former Radar Forman for the Nike Hercules Missile Program at Camp Kilmer that managed and repaired different sites in New Jersey. He then was a property Disposal Specialist at MOTBY of Bayonne for many years, before relocating to Ft. Monmouth; there, he worked as a Logistics Specialist. His spirit of cooperation and personal perseverance made it possible to overcome numerous problems with the Patriot Missile System.
He was a loving husband, father, grandfather, and uncle. He loved spending quality time with his family, especially his pride and joy, his grandchildren. A silent hero, and mentor to all, he was a wonderful human being who always thought of others over himself. Mel had a wonderful sense of humor and enjoyed music and dancing. An avid history reader and excellent writer, he loved to tell stories of his time as a child growing up during the great depression.
He was preceded in death by his sister Irene O'Brien and first wife and longtime friend Dorothy Kepley Akerley.
Surviving are his dear wife Margaret Dyer Akerley, his loving children, Gary Akerley of Staten Island, NY; Melvin Akerley and wife Mary of Toms River, Mark Akerley and wife Eleanor of Staten Island, NY; Kathleen Henderson and late husband Bruce of Cape May, and Bonny DiBernardo and husband Dominick of Brick, his eight cherished grandchildren, Pail, Danielle, Kim, Michele, Nicky, Dawn, Amanda, and Vinny, his seven great-grandchildren Kryste, Lisa, Taylor, Arielle, Dylan, Brody, and Aubrey, his great-great grandson Mason, his niece Lois Garner of Sonora, CA; his nephew William O'Brien and wife Mia of Wayne, and his great niece Stephanie O'Brien.
Visitation will be held on Friday, June 21, 2013 from 2:00 to 4:00 and 7:00 to 9:00PM at O'Brien Funeral Home, 505 Burnt Tavern Road, Brick. A Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at 10:00AM on Saturday, June 22, 2013 at Church of the Epiphany, Thiele Road, Brick. Interment will follow at St. Mary of the Lake Cemetery, Lakewood.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in Mel's memory to the Helping Hands or St. Vincent DePaul Society of Church of the Epiphany, 615 Thiele Road, Brick, NJ 08724
For more information or to send condolences, please visit www.OBrienFuneralHome.com
O'Brien Funeral Home
505 Burnt Tavern Road
Brick, NJ 08724
Published in Asbury Park Press on June 20, 2013