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Lester J. Konyhas


1930 - 2016 Obituary Condolences
Lester J. Konyhas Obituary
Lester J. Konyhas

AGE: 86 • Toms River

Lester J. Konyhas, 86, of Toms River, passed away on Wednesday, December 21, 2016. Born and raised in Trenton by Lester Sr. and Elizabeth, Les first came to the shore area as a teenager, hitchhiking with his best friend Owen Caffrey. Those trips led to a summer job in Seaside Heights and a boss who set him up on a blind date with his wife of 57 years, Jean.

A graduate of Rider College, Les moved to Toms River to marry Jean and teach accounting at Toms River High School. A college and high school soccer player himself, Les is responsible in large part for bringing soccer to the shore area. He became head soccer coach at Toms River High School in 1960, where he remained until Toms River High School North opened and he took the helm there. He often said there was no career he would have preferred, and was thrilled when former players, now men, took the time to visit him when life or business brought them back to Toms River. Les is a member of the Toms River Athletic Hall of Fame and the New Jersey State Soccer Coaches Hall of Fame.

After retiring, Les and his signature red chair became sideline fixtures at his grandchildren's sporting events. Les loved all things red—from flowers to clothes to cardinals. He also enjoyed working in his yard, and never saw a weed he could resist pulling (with the roots). His beloved 1989 Chevy pickup truck "Big Les" has yet to be touched by a drop of rain. Eating was one of his favorite pastimes, especially when pizza and subs were on the menu, so it is fitting that his last dinner was topped off by a Butterscotch Krimpet.

Les is survived by his wife Jean; two daughters and their families, Dawn, Dan and Bryan Sullivan of Beachwood, and Kelly, Dave, Jenny and Jeff Parr of Manasquan; "adopted" son George Rossi; nieces and nephews Kevin, Kent, and Karen Mulford; Yogi, Lynne, Paula and Gary McKelvey; Pat and Jill Monaghan; Brian, Doug, Drew and Scott Caffrey; and the extended Sullivan family. He was predeceased by his parents and sister Betty.

Visitation will be held on Friday, Dec. 23 from 4 to 8 p.m. at Anderson and Campbell Funeral Home, 703 Main St., Toms River. A Funeral Service will be held on Saturday at 10:00 a.m. at Anderson and Campbell Funeral Home. Entombment will follow at Ocean County Memorial Park in Toms River. In lieu of flowers donations may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project at www.woundedwarriorproject.org. in memory of Les.
Published in Asbury Park Press on Dec. 23, 2016
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