Obituary of Thomas Joseph Van Geldren
Thomas Joseph VanGeldren peacefully left us on April 5, 2023 surrounded by his loving family. Tom is survived by his loving wife Betty (Cahill) his adoring children Thomas VanGeldren (Cathy) Irene Sigel (Michael) and Lori Zillante (David). Dad will be welcomed into heaven, by his sons Scott and Duane. Thomas was born in Hoboken, NJ to his parents the late Frank and Genevieve VanGeldren. Pre-deceased by his siblings Ana, Frankie, Mary, Raymond (Maxie), and Gerard. Also, survived by many loving nieces and nephews who he loved dearly.
Tom was employed by Steen School in Bogota for many years as well as the Englewood School District. His true calling was his beloved crossing guard position for the Village of Ridgefield Park. “Tom” as the kids called him left a legacy of comfort for all those who stopped by his crossing guard post thru the years.
Some would even stop back years later to update him on their lives. Tom had many favorite coffee shops throughout his years in Ridgefield Park. Some of his favorites were the Getty Gas, Marco’s, Palermo’s and the Dollar Store. If you wanted to find him before or after work that’s where he would be, playing his numbers and drinking a coffee with great friends. Tom always had a story or joke to tell all with a smile on his face. His children remember that his passion for the NY Giants and the NY Yankees started at a young age and lasted till his final days as he watched opening day 2023 with the biggest smile ..the Yankees win the Yankees win.
The happiest and funniest Pop-Pop, he was the man, the myth, the legend and always will to his grandchildren Kristen, Tanya, Billy, David, Daniel, Catie, Lauren, Alison, and Tommy. Great grandchildren Aidan, Jaida, Shana, and Arianna.
Many of our favorite moments watching him work on his favorite red Bronco, singing his oldies to us, giving us crabbing lessons, sitting on the porch with neighbors, teaching us how to protect ourselves, family Atlantic City trips, his love for duct tape repairs and his infamous lottery tickets.
Dad would sing his oldies to us for as long as we can remember ..whether we were happy or sad ..so now we sing to you dad “ at night the stars put on a show for free, and darling, you can share it all with me, up on the roof”. (The Drifters)
To his one true love Betty who he often serenaded with one of his favorite 50’s ballads ..Oh oh, only you can do make this change in me,
For it's true, you are my destiny.. his love and laugh will be missed every day.
Rest Easy, till we see you again.
Come to me, all of you who are tired from carrying heavy loads, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke and put it on you, and learn from me, because I am gentle and humble in spirit; and you will find rest.
Memorial Mass Tuesday, April 11, 2023 at 9:30 am at Saint Francis Roman Catholic Church, 114 Main Street, Ridgefield Park, NJ 07660. Interment of Thomas and Duane VanGeldren immediately following at Holy Cross Cemetery, 340 Ridge Road, North Arlington, NJ 07031
If desired donations may be made to Saint Francis Food Pantry 114 Mt. Vernon Street, Ridgefield Park, NJ 07660 in his memory.