Richard Norris Shanley Jr.
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AGE: 64 • Long Branch
Richard Norris Shanley Jr., 64, of Long Branch, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, April 2, 2013, at Saint Barnabas Monmouth Care Center in Long Branch after a long and valiant struggle with melanoma. He was born in New York and graduated from Christian Brothers Academy, Lincroft in 1966 whereupon he entered the Brothers of the Christian Schools. After a one year novitiate in Barrytown, N.Y., Rick was enrolled in Catholic University, Washington, D.C. from which he graduated with a B.A. in 1971. While teaching at La Salle Academy in lower Manhattan, he continued his studies at New York University earning an M.A. in English Literature in 1973, having completed his thesis on John Milton's Paradise Lost.
Not long after, having left the Christian Brothers, he worked in publishing at Doubleday & Company which he found stimulating but somehow unsatisfying and eventually landed a teaching position at Marymount Manhattan School in New York. And so began a long and distinguished career teaching in independent schools in New York (Marymount, The Towne School and The Collegiate School), in Portland, Maine (The Waynflete School), in Philadelphia (St. Peter's School) and, finally, in Rumson, N.J. at the Rumson Country Day School from which he retired in 2011. During his 35-year career, he taught virtually every subject and at all levels, eventually settling on "middle and upper school" mathematics and English. He was a demanding, but fair, teacher known to dress in period costume when called for and, at the end of the day, he was respected and beloved by his students. He was the kind of teacher everyone wants for their children.
Rick volunteered his time for "Meals on Wheels shepherding RCDS students in the process which he found very satisfying. He was a communicant, Eucharistic Minister and sometime soup kitchen volunteer at Trinity Church in Asbury Park. And he was a lifelong member of the Monmouth Beach Bath and Tennis Club, Monmouth Beach which he considered his living room from Memorial Day to Labor Day (and beyond in recent years). He enjoyed seeing and chatting-up his friends and their children of all ages, many current and former students, while polishing off another New York Times crossword puzzle or one of the many books he was reading at any one time. He was loved by all who knew him for his powerful intellect, his crackling wit, his good cheer, kind heart and good soul. We will all miss you terribly, Rick, but we are comforted by so many great memories of you and knowing you are now at peace.
Rick was predeceased by his parents, Rita and Richard Shanley, and is survived by his brother, Frank, and his wife, Jeanne of Rumson; his nieces, Molly and Casey; and his nephew, Jack, who adored their "Uncle Rick" and by the many Shanley and McLoughlin cousins and "near-cousins" to whom he was devoted.
Friends may call from 5 to 8 p.m. Friday, April 5 at Thompson Memorial Home, 310 Broad St., Red Bank. A memorial service will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 6 at Trinity Church, 503 Asbury Ave., Asbury Park. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested donations be made in Rick's memory to The Rumson Country Day School, 35 Bellevue Ave., Rumson, NJ 07760.
Thompson Memorial Home
310 Broad St. Red Bank, NJ 07701
Published in Asbury Park Press on Apr. 4, 2013