If someone tells you that Tim O'Hare was one of a rare breed, believe them. Because they're right.
Timothy M. O'Hare -- father, husband, Marine, school board member, Bergen County sheriff's officer and much more -- died the morning of Sunday, Nov. 20. He was 50 years old.
O'Hare loved his wife and kids fiercely. He served his country proudly. And he moved through the world with a joy and enthusiasm that nothing -- not even a lengthy, valiant battle against cancer -- could quench.
O'Hare, of Waldwick, returned home a week ago Sunday to spend his final days with Lisa, their children, Connor and Kaitlyn, and other loved ones, colleagues and friends.
Yet when the news came it was still hard to believe.
"You fought all the way. You never gave up," wrote Wilbur Lloyd, a recently retired fellow county sheriff's officer. "You will be missed not only by your family but by everyone who knew you."
Tim O'Hare's funeral is scheduled for next Monday, Nov. 28, following visitation the day before at the Warner-Wozniak funeral home in Clifton. CLICK HERE for details....
O'Hare (Badge #1606) served various roles in the Bergen County Sheriff's Office with distinction. He was a member of the Honor Guard and more recently the Regional Crisis Negotiation team, which works hand-in-glove with the county regional SWAT unit.
He'd also been a dedicated member of the local Board of Education, where district officials said O'Hare "always put the children of this town first and foremost" and "wanted what was best for the Waldwick community."
The news that the Bergenfield High School grad had been diagnosed with inoperable stage 4 pancreatic cancer that had spread to his liver was incomprehensible.
"This came out of left field...no symptoms, no nothing," he told a friend last year. "To say I was shocked is an understatement...But I am doing everything they tell me..."
As if that weren't cruel enough, O'Hare got COVID in April 2021, which disrupted his treatments.
He was eager to "get back in the ring" once it had passed, he said, "to throw some more punches" at the relentless disease.
"I cannot tell you how much I appreciate everyone offering their support," O'Hare added. "To see the human genuineness of people is totally overwhelming.
"If I lived to 105 and said thank you five times a day it still wouldn’t be enough."
"Tim had a heart of gold. He would do anything for anyone," said Renee Frey. "I'm sure you would agree if you were lucky enough to know him."
Frey met O'Hare when their boys were in kindergarten together.
He told her he liked working the night shift "because he did not want to miss any part of his kids growing up. He said he could sleep later in life but never have these moments again."
Frey promised O'Hare before he died that she'd "help get Lisa and the kids through this and always be there for them."
Toward that end, she's launched a fundraiser: College Fund for Connor & Kaitlyn O'Hare
Arrangements were being finalized. Check back here.
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