Barbara Elsie (nee Marchini) Urgovitch, 86, a longtime resident of Clifton, NJ passed away peacefully at home on July 19, 2020.
She was the devoted and loving wife to her high school sweetheart Kenneth for 64 years. Mother to Kenneth Urgovitch Jr., Beth De Bartolo, Susan Bush, AnneMarie (Mimi) Urgovitch, and Kimberly Kastner (Scott). Sister to Eileen (Albert) Gray. Grandmother to Dana, Matthew, Graydon and Cooper. Predeceased by her daughter Mary Ellen Brophy and son-in-law Wayne De Bartolo. While the family is saddened that Barbara is no longer with us on earth, they find comfort in knowing she has reunited with her daughter in heaven.
Barbara was raised in Garfield, NJ and attended Garfield High School where she had starry eyes for the star of the football and track team, Ken. After graduating in 1951, Barbara received her nursing training from St. Mary’s School of Nursing while Ken went on to North Carolina State. Throughout their college careers, the two remained in touch and communicated the old-fashion way through love letters. After graduating college in 1955, our real life Barbie and Ken married on May 12, 1956 at St. Leo’s Church in Elmwood Park, NJ just one day prior to embarking on their next journey as part of the United States Air Force family. The newlyweds relocated to Missouri where Ken pursued his pilot career as Second Lieutenant and Barbara started her life as a Mom. After Ken’s time in the military concluded, they returned to New Jersey and settled in Clifton where they have remained for 60 years.
Barbara began working as a registered nurse and dedicated her entire career to St. Mary’s Hospital in Passaic, NJ. A devout Catholic, it was important to Barbara that she work in a Catholic hospital and care for the sick while remaining a disciple of the Catholic faith. Barbara and Ken joined St. Brendan Catholic Church in Clifton, NJ in 1960. Both were invited to become Eucharistic Ministers in 1980 and because of her deep faith, Barbara was later requested to become a parish trustee. In her later years, Barbara volunteered her time at St. Bonaventure’s Church in Paterson, NJ where she cherished being part of the Novena Group. Her service as a nurse and passion for the church were tightly knit. She was deeply grateful for the opportunities her nursing career offered and the ability to care for the sick. After becoming a Eucharistic Minister, she often made house calls to check on sick parishioners of the church and bring them Holy Communion. The church later returned this favor to Barbara when she was unable to attend mass. The family is forever grateful to those who assisted in giving her this gift as they know how important it was to her.
After her retirement from nursing, Barbara remained committed to the health community by participating in various studies. Some of these studies include the “The Nurse’s Health Study” conducted by Harvard University and the “Cancer Prevention Study-II” conducted by the American Cancer Society which both required a 25+ year commitment to providing data as part of research.
It wasn’t all work and no play for Barbara. When they weren’t in Clifton, the family could be found on Long Beach Island at their family shore house which they owned until 2012. At her home away from home, Barbara could often be found entertaining, shopping, cooking, relaxing, and of course, going to Sunday Mass at St. Francis of Assisi in Brant Beach. She was happiest when the shore house was bustling with family, eating together around the big table, and playing games like Michigan Rummy and BINGO. A woman who also loved to gamble, she could easily escape LBI to visit one of her favorite places—Atlantic City. She also enjoyed playing the lottery and spending hours scratching off lottery tickets.
Barbara was well known among family and friends for her card sending. Often times, these cards included snippets from newspapers or magazines that she thought the recipient may enjoy or a simple handwritten note that she was thinking of them.
Toward the end of her life, Barbara was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia which eventually stripped her of her ability to communicate. Even through the most difficult and frustrating days, she would calmly endure whatever was handed to her and her family attributed that calmness to her faith. The family was blessed to find the loving, gentle heart of Manana who has been Barbara’s caregiver for the past seven years. Manana loved Barbara like her own mother and the family is eternally grateful for the sacrifices Manana has made to give Barbara the best care possible. She is an angel in disguise.
The family will welcome condolences at 9:45am and will hold a Mass of Christian Burial at 10:15am on Tuesday, July 28, 2020 at St. Bonaventure’s Church (174 Ramsey Street at Danforth Avenue, Paterson, NJ). Due to current restrictions, 60 people are allowed in the church. Social distancing and masks are required. Inurnment immediately to follow at George Washington Memorial Park (Corner of Paramus Road and Century Road, Paramus, NJ). In lieu of flowers, a memorial donation can be made in her name to Alzheimer’s New Jersey at www.alznj.org (425 Eagle Rock Avenue, Suite 203, Roseland, NJ 07068) or The Association of Frontotemporal Degeneration at www.theafd.org (2700 Horizon Drive, Suite 120, King of Prussia, PA 19406). Bizub-Quinlan Funeral Home is handling arrangements, please visit www.bizubquinlan.com for online condolences to the family.
Alzheimer's New Jersey
425 Eagle Rock Avenue, Suite 203, Roseland NJ 07068
The Association of Frontotemporal Degeneration
2700 Horizon Drive, Suite 120, King of Prussia PA 19406