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Eugene J. Bedell

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Eugene J. Bedell Obituary
Eugene J. Bedell

AGE: 87 • Keansburg

Eugene J. Bedell, 87, of Keansburg, passed away at home surrounded by family on January 4, 2016. He was predeceased by his beloved wife Arline Mayer Bedell, his sister Patricia Delhagen, his son Evan Bedell, and son - in - law Robert Allen. Born in Elizabeth, NJ, the son of Eugene and Margaret, Gene had been a proud resident of Keansburg since childhood. A graduate of Leonardo HS, he served in the Army Medical Corps during WWII and received his degree from Monmouth College which he attended on the GI Bill. He was employed as a Special Police Officer in Keansburg. Gene also played semi - professional football for the Leonardo Field Club and the Asbury Park Yellow Jackets.

Gene went on to become a labor leader serving as the Business Agent for the Lathers International Union, Local 346, AFL - CIO and as a member of the Carpenters Union, Local 2250. In 1964, the voters of Monmouth County elected Gene the 1st Democratic Freeholder in 40 years. During his term, the initial phases of Brookdale Community College and the construction of the eastern branch of the Monmouth County Library were initiated.

Seven years later, he was urged to run for the State Assembly. This would be the 1st time in 50 years that a Democratic defeated a Republican for a full - term Assembly seat in Monmouth County. As a member of the General Assembly, Gene quickly impressed his colleagues as a unique legislator. The Republican leadership appointed him Chairman of the Committee in Trenton where he led the opposition to the proposed state income tax.

In 1973, the people elected Gene to the NJ State Senate and reelected him in 1977 by a record margin. He served as Chairman of the Senate Committee on Labor, Industry, and Professions where he became the chief architect for most of NJ's workers Compensation legislation. The key to his success was a quick smile, a casual manner and a deep and abiding passion for people. In 1989, Gene was appointed by the Republican majority to the Monmouth County Board of Freeholders to fill a Democratic vacancy. He continued his life in public service as the Borough Manager of Keansburg, the City Administrator of Long Branch, the Administrator of Seaside Park, and retired as the Executive Director of the KMUA.

Gene had served as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Monmouth County Mental Health Association, the Red Cross, and a member of the Regional Board of the United Counties Trust CO. He was a member of the American Legion Post 338 Leonardo, NJ and the VFW Post 4303 Hazlet, NJ where he regularly attended special Wednesday afternoon meetings. An avid fan of college and pro football, quality family time in the Bedell household revolved around yelling at the TV during his beloved Giants games.

Gene is survived by his son Brian and daughter - in - law Susan Bedell of Monmouth Beach, and four daughters, Terry Allen, Middletown, Lauren Bedell, Keansburg, Bridget and son - in - law Dean Stolpe, Middletown, Meaghan and son - in - law Shawn Buchan, Aberdeen, and his best friend and companion Eileen Taylor, Keansburg. He is also survived by his 12 grandchildren Erin, Kristen and husband John, Robert, Caitlin, Ashley, Mathew, Jordan, Gillian, Camryn, Arlynn, and Finley and his great granddaughters Emma and Harper.

Eugene will be reposing at the Evergreen Memorial Funeral Home 1735 Rt. 35, Middletown, NJ 07748 from 3 - 9pm on Thursday, January 7, 2016. A mass of Christian Burial will be on Friday 10:15am at St. Ann's Church in Keansburg. In Lieu of flowers, donations to the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia are encouraged.

Published in Asbury Park Press on Jan. 6, 2016
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