Dr. John P. Delaney, 79, known as “Jeff” to colleagues, friends, and family, passed away on July 1 at Riverview Medical Center in Red Bank after a valiant 8-year battle with cancer and health issues.
He had been a member of the Matawan-Aberdeen Board of Education since 2009.
Born in Hartford, Connecticut., he was a teacher, college professor and an institutional program director. Jeff Delaney ran state institutions for the handicapped as superintendent, with the goal of protecting and giving residents a place to live with a humane, safe and better quality of life.
He was a strong and determined man whose main goal in life was to aid, protect, and make life better for children, people with disabilities, and those in need of help and support.
He was especially proud of the work he did in Apple Creek, Ohio and at the Woodbridge Developmental Center in New Jersey. He often spoke of the people he worked with and helped in those places. He also became the deputy director of education and the acting State Commissioner of Education while in Ohio.
Jeff Delaney came to New Jersey from Ohio in 1979 and became superintendent of Woodbridge Development Center, where he worked to ensure the residents had rights, quality education, recreation and care from a trained and compassionate staff.
He was also an education specialist for the New Jersey Department of Education, where he worked to improve the quality of education for all students in underperforming school districts.
In addition to serving on the Matawan-Aberdeen board, he volunteered with the Monmouth County Human Rights Commission, and was the president of the VFW Auxiliary in Cliffwood.
One of the things he was most proud of was being a co-founder and board of directors member for K.E.Y.S. Academy, housed on the grounds of Brookdale College in Lincroft. It was created as an alternative high school in conjunction with Matawan-Aberdeen schools for teens from all over the state who have been through rehab programs and needed a supportive environment in which to earn a high school diploma.
He is survived by his beloved wife and partner for over 42 years, Debra; his 5 children, Kelly; John Timothy and his wife, Katie; Jessica; Mary (Beth); and Kyle; as well as his adored grandchildren, Max, Alexander, Lillian, Connor, Aurora, Maya, and William. He is also survived by his brothers, Stephen and his wife, Angela; and William and his wife, Joan; and their children, his nephews, Zachary, Nicholas, William and Michael.