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Bergen Special Olympics Community Mourns Ridgewood Coach And Mother, 56

Elizabeth “BJ” Youmans of Ridgewood was a longtime coach of the Bergen Wildcats.
Elizabeth “BJ” Youmans of Ridgewood was a longtime coach of the Bergen Wildcats. Photo Credit: Facebook

RIDGEWOOD, N.J. – The Bergen County Special Olympics community is mourning a longtime coach and lifelong Ridgewood resident.

Elizabeth “BJ” Youmans died Monday after a long, courageous battle with cancer. She was 56.

“She will be missed after more than 18 years volunteering her time with our many special athletes of the Bergen County Wildcats Program. BJ was loved and adored by her ‘Kitty Cats’ as she so lovingly called them,” the Bergen County Wildcats said in a statement on its Facebook page.

The Wildcats is a team of special needs athletes, age 8 and older, from throughout Bergen County who compete in sports such as floor hockey, bowling and softball.

Youmans is survived by her husband of 29 years, Thomas, as well as their children, Crystal, Kim and Tom. As one of eight children, she leaves behind countless aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.

“She loved her children with every breath of her body and then had enough love left for countless others,” her obituary states.

In lieu of flowers, her family asks for people to consider donating to the Bergen County Wildcats by visiting or via mail to Bergen County Wildcats Program, P.O. Box 363, Montvale, NJ 07645.

A visitation will be held from 4 p.m. to 9 p.m. on Thursday, May 18, at the Powerhouse Christian Church, 500 W Main St. #2, in Wyckoff. A funeral mass will be held at 10 a.m. Friday at the Powerhouse Christian Church.

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