Harry William Vendemia, 68, of Ortley, NJ formerly of Union, NJ, passed away peacefully on May 23, 2023.
Harry was born on June 25, 1954, to James Vendemia and Arlene (nee Benson). Being one of five children Harry’s life was full of family. He was always good for a laugh and was known for being a kindhearted young man.
Harry graduated from Vailsburg High School in 1972. It was his first job as a Belmar Lifeguard that his life path began. On the beaches of Belmar, Harry met the love of his life, Kathie Cox. At only 17 years old their love story began. They were married on
September 18, 1977. Harry became a sheet metal worker for the Local #25 for over 35 years. They resided in Union, NJ where they created a beautiful life together. Harry and Kathie have two amazing, children Melissa and Christopher. His role as their father defined him and it was from there, he built a
life for them. Harry enjoyed his time coaching youth sports, being an active member of the Knights of Columbus, and a patron of St. Michael’s Church. Harry was an avid softball player in the West Orange men’s league for over 30 years. He loved playing the sport with his lifelong friends, but his greatest moments on the field was when his son and friends joined the team. Harry’s greatest gifts in life was the bonds he created with his family and friends. Harry has a presence that was larger than life. He was a force to be reckoned with but a gentle giant at heart. His warm
personality and infectious sense of humor made him loved by all. It was not until the birth of his grandchildren that Harry really found his greatest role in life. Pop was adored by his four grandchildren: Harry, Hope, Jack and Joseph. His eyes lit up every time he spoke of them and there was nothing he wouldn’t do for them.
Harry and Kathie relocated to Ortley Beach, NJ. This move was motivated with the desire to provide a place for their grandchildren to make everlasting childhood memories. He loved nothing more than spending his days on the beach with his wife, family, and friends. Spending his days soaking up the sun
and opening his home to his family and friends was what made Harry happiest.
Harry fought a battle against cancer for close to five years. He fought cancer the way he lived his life, stoically and with quiet strength. Despite spending much of his time in and out of treatment he never lost hope or his sense of humor. Throughout his entire journey he cracked jokes with his children, made silly faces with his grandchildren and even pulled lighthearted pranks on the nurses. He had a great
ability to make everyone around him smile and his sense of humor is something that will be missed most.
Harry is predeceased by his parent’s James and Arlene Vendemia. He is survived by his loving wife Kathie and their two children Melissa (Michael) Bonassisa and Christopher (Laura) Vendemia. His greatest treasures Harry, Hope, Jack, and Joseph. Brothers James (Susan), Joseph (Donna), Michael (Diane) and sister Debbie. Beloved In-law’s Thomas (Elena), Michael, Mark, Marianne (Peter). Harry
leaves behind multiple cousins, nieces and nephews who adored their Uncle Harry.
Family and Friends are invited to share their memories of Harry during visitation at Galante Funeral Home, 2800 Morris Ave., Union, NJ on Friday, May 26, from 2-8 pm. The funeral mass will be held on Saturday, May 27 at 10:30 am at St. Theresa Church in Kenilworth, NJ. Interment at Fairview Cemetery in Westfield, NJ.
In lieu of flowers, donations in his name may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.