Margaret Garcia, 83, of Hazlet, New Jersey, died on January 13, 2022 after a brief illness. She was surrounded by her adoring family.
Born Margaret Catherine Olenhaus, Marge grew up in Jersey City where she attended Stuyvesant High School. As a young woman, she lived in southern California before moving to Hazlet in 1963. In 1970, she became a single mom and raised six children on her own.
Marge was a healer and a caregiver. She put herself through nursing school and worked as a Registered Nurse at Riverview Medical Center. She was among the small group of nurses who volunteered to care for AIDS patients in the early days of the HIV/AIDS pandemic. Following her retirement from Riverview in 1999, she cared for the elderly and the disabled at Renaissance House and Regency Park long term care facilities. In her seventh decade, she began a new chapter as a substitute nurse for the Hazlet Township and Atlantic Highlands public schools.
To all who needed to hear it, Marge counseled, "Life is an adventure." By her actions, she gave meaning to those words. Among her many adventures, she skydived above New Jersey, hiked the Grand Canyon, helicoptered over the Las Vegas Strip, visited Buckingham Palace, walked the Great Wall of China, stood among the ancient ruins of Athens and Rome, and most important to her, took her children and grandchildren on road trips to experience the beauty of the United States. Marge was a talented cook, painter, and dressmaker. She volunteered as a den mother, soccer coach, baseball umpire, costume designer, and campaign manager. She tailored the colors of the Jersey City Firefighters Emerald Society Pipes and Drums and the 444th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment, New Jersey Army National Guard.
Marge loved fiercely and deeply and her loved ones will continue to honor her legacy by living their lives as she always did: to the fullest.
Marge is survived by her children, Deborah (John) Valentino, Robert (Annie) Sariego, Barbara Jane Garcia, Kenneth (Amy) Garcia, Victoria (Vincent) Rice, and Adam (Diane) Garcia; grandchildren Deidra (Andres) Garcia, Vincent (Casey) Solomeno III, Ryan (Nicole) Sariego, Eric (Marissa) Hoff, Gregory Hoff, Nicole Martinez, Michael (Reyhan) Garcia, Vincent (Angie) Rice, Samantha (Willie) Garcia, Nicholas (Kryss) Rice, Jeremie Garcia, and Giada Garcia; great-grandchildren Eliana and Juliette Sariego, Luca, Nico, and Wren Hoff, Willie and Max Peters, Andres Marcus Arias, and Damien Rice; sisters Loretta Conlin and Dorothy Rotondo; and many nieces, nephews, and cousins. She was preceded in death by her parents Michael and Regina Budd Olenhaus; sister Barbara Bartholomew and brother Francis Olenhaus; brothers-in-law Stanley Bartholomew, Benito Rotondo, and Michael Conlin; nephews Thomas Bartholomew and Matthew Rotondo; niece Karen Conlin; and her beloved grandson Kenneth James Garcia.
Family and friends are invited to attend a memorial visitation on Sunday, January 16, 2022 from 12:00 to 4:00 PM at Shore Point Funeral Home and Cremation Services, Inc., 3269 State Highway/Route North, Hazlet, New Jersey 07730. A prayer service will be offered at the funeral home during visitation hours. In respect of Marge's wishes, she will be privately cremated. In lieu of flowers, donations in loving memory of Margaret to the Wounded Warrior Project would be greatly appreciated. To donate, please visit, support.woundedwarriorproject.org. For information, directions, or to send condolences to the family, please visit, www.shorepointfh.com.
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