We are deeply sorry for your loss - the staff at Bizub Quinlan Funeral Home
Cecilia "Celie" Degnan
It is with a broken heart we share the news that our mother, wife, sister, aunt, cousin, niece, and friend Cecilia M. (Van Winkle) Degnan, was taken from us too soon on the morning of 14th of June 2022. Affectionately known to everyone as “Celie,” many, considered her a de-facto matriarch of the family. She lived on Day Street in Bloomfield with husband Jeff for 32 years just down the street from St Thomas the Apostle R.C. Church where she was an active member of the parish. The Day Street house was always a happening place where she raised her three children and along with the other moms in the neighborhood helped raise the Day Street community
Family and friends were a big part of Celie’s life, and holidays traditionally brought folks to Day Street from both the neighborhood, and points worldwide. Celie & Jeff thought there was no sense in having a big house if you did not fill it up with folks. They loved the idea of a packed and vibrant house. There was always something going on at the Degnan household and Celie made sure everyone felt welcome no matter what time folks stopped by during the day or night. Celie served as a second mom to many a niece, nephew or cousin who called Day Street home while doing an internship in NYC, finishing a semester at a nearby college or in between apartments in North Jersey. One of the original organizers of the Day Street Labor Day block party, she helped establish an end of the summer neighborhood tradition.
Celie grew up in Clifton with her two brothers Charlie & Harry, but also lived with cousins Theresa, Mary & Danny Bay when their mom (Aunt Mary) needed some help after a life change and moved back in with Celie’s parents. She graduated Paul VI high school in Clifton in 1982 where she met future husband Jeffery over 41 years ago. Celie studied at the State University of New York New Paltz earning her bachelor’s degree. Celie worked as a teacher at the North Jersey ELKS Developmental Disabilities Agency (Passaic County ELKS CP Center) in Clifton for over 30 years and was probably the nicest and kindest person you would ever meet.
She was known as “Tweety Bird” to her predeceased father “Hank.” Celie & Jeff modified their Day Street home to accommodate her mother “Cecile” and served as the primary caregiver allowing her to end her days with family.
Celie is survived and will always be loved and remembered by her beloved husband, Jeffrey T. Degnan; three devoted children, Kaitlyn Degnan of Rumford, RI, Kevin Degnan and his wife, Jennifer of Clifton and Karah Degnan of Bloomfield; and two brothers, Charles Van Winkle and his wife, Lea, daughter Shelbe of Underhill, VT, Harold Van Winkle and his wife, Stella, sons Nick & Luke of Clifton, along with Nick’s wife Carly and daughter Vera.
Visitation will be held Friday from 4:00 to 8:00 pm at Bizub-Quinlan Funeral Home, 1313 Van Houten Avenue, Clifton. Funeral services will be held Saturday 8:30 am from the funeral home followed by a 9:30 am Mass at St. Thomas the Apostle R.C. Church, 60 Byrd Avenue, Bloomfield. Cremation will be private. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to North Jersey ELKS Developmental Disabilities Agency Children’s Benefit Fund 1481 Main Avenue, Clifton, NJ 07011 ( www.njedda.org/supporting-njedda-donations/ ). Please visit www.bizubquinlan.com to leave condolences to the family on the Tribute Wall section of the obituary.
North Jersey ELKS Developmental Disabilities Agency
1481 Main Avenue, Clifton NJ 07011