Judge Joseph T. Connolly, 79

By on February 24, 2018

Joseph ConnollyThe Honorable Joseph T. Connolly, 79, died on February 13, 2018, in Glen Ridge. He will be remembered as an enduring presence on the bench, a supporter of the community, a volunteer helping those who were struggling and most of all a devoted husband, brother, father and grandfather.

Born in Montclair, Judge Connolly grew up in Verona and lived in Glen Ridge for 41 years before moving to Roseland in 2012. He graduated from Our Lady of the Lake School, Verona High School, St. Peter’s College and Fordham University School of Law.

Judge Connolly served as municipal court judge in Glen Ridge for 32 years. He also sat on the bench in Bloomfield for six years and as acting or visiting judge in 20 of the 22 municipalities of Essex County, including Newark, Irvington and Orange. He practiced law privately in Bloomfield and guest lectured at William Paterson University and the Institute for Continued Legal Education. He volunteered as a mentor to students interested in studying law and as a Moot Court Judge at Seton Hall University School of Law. Judge Connolly was an active member of Glen Ridge Kiwanis and had served as President of the Glen Ridge Community Fund, Bloomfield Kiwanis, Bloomfield Jaycees and the Bloomfield Lawyers’ Club, and as Trustee of the Family Service League. He also spent time volunteering in pastoral and A.A. support roles at St. Barnabas Medical Center and local prisons.

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A spiritual man, Joe balanced a strong sense of faith with intellectual curiosity. He enjoyed attending church and bible study, was a voracious reader, loved animals, especially his beloved pets, and always relished that second bowl of ice cream. His favorite moments were those spent with family.

Judge Connolly is survived by his wife of 51 years, Phyllis J. (nee Marturano) Connolly; his children, James V. Connolly (Rene), Michael J. Connolly (Ransom Bruce) and Victoria L. Withington (David); his grandchildren, Anna Withington, Adam M. Connolly and one new addition, due in July; and his siblings, Patricia E. Connolly, Paula J. Connolly, twin sister Joan M. Lytle, John P. Connolly and Peter J. Connolly.

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A memorial service will be held at the Glen Ridge Congregational Church, 195 Ridgewood Avenue, Glen Ridge, on Saturday, March 24, at 1:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, contributions to the Mental Health Association of Essex and Morris or PAWS of Montclair would be gratefully appreciated.

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