Senator Tony Bucco: The Best of OLMC
New Jersey lost one of its great public servants this past Monday, when Senator Tony Bucco passed away from a heart attack. A long-time parishioner of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, Senator Bucco quietly embodied the best of our parish and school community: For more than 40 years, he was known around the state as a true gentleman who lived to serve others with joy and a tireless work ethic. In a world where civil discourse sometimes seems all but forgotten, Senator Bucco fulfilled his public duties with humility, grace, and integrity, earning the respect and trust of constituents and colleagues alike.
Senator Bucco was a devoted Catholic who remained true to the convictions of his faith throughout his public service and regularly served his parish as an usher at OLMC’s 5:15 Mass. He was a dedicated husband to his wife of 60 years, Helen Jayne, a loving father to his son, Assemblyman Tony Bucco, and a proud grandfather and great-grandfather. He was also a hardworking businessman who operated Baker Titan Adhesives, a closely-held, service-oriented adhesives factory located in Paterson.
A native of Boonton, Senator Bucco began serving his community as an Alderman in 1978, then as Mayor in 1984, a position he held for 5 years until becoming a Morris County Freeholder. From Freeholder he became a state Assemblyman, then finally a state Senator, a position he held with distinction from 1997 until his death. Throughout his tenure he advocated for the most vulnerable of society, and one of his last legislative accomplishments was the passage of a law to protect school children from abuse and exploitation. As his colleague Assemblyman Michael Patrick Carroll said, “[h]is greatest joy was to work for other people.”
The people of OLMC were blessed to call Senator Bucco a neighbor, role model, and friend. And even as we mourn his passing, we dedicate ourselves to honoring his memory with lives that follow his example, steeped in love and service of God and one another.