Harold F. C. Ryan

February 13, 1954 - June 21, 2018
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Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services
Elaine
Elaine
Ashley Haug
Clifford Parker
Somerset County 4-H Horse Project
William and Sylvia Jennings
Karen E. Hamshar
Jason Narbonne Light a candle

Obituary

Harold F. C. Ryan, age 64 years, of Kingwood Township, NJ, died suddenly on Thursday, June 21, 2018 at Hunterdon Medical Center, Raritan Township, NJ.

Born in New York City, NY, February 13, 1954, son of the late Marjorie J. Kreisel, Harold spent the first three years of his life in Haledon, NJ, prior to moving to Warren Township, Somerset County where he lived most of his life before moving to Kingwood Township in 1992.

A 1972 graduate of Watchung Hills Regional High School, Harold went on to receive an Associates in Applied Science and Fire Science Technology from Union County Technical College, Scotch Plains, NJ.

Beginning to volunteer for Mt. Bethel Volunteer Fire Company in 1972, Harold’s passion for fire service was ignited by his time at Mt. Bethel. It was during this time he helped  found the Warren Township Extrication Team. He also started working for the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service around that time and had served over 40 years in fire service.

Currently, Harold was serving as Section A-8 Fire Warden for the New Jersey State Forest Fire Service. Harold’s passion for fire service is one of the first things people learned about him, as his zeal for the job showed that is was not a job, but rather a part of his persona. In fact, there was usually some sort of fire apparatus in his driveway for most of his life.

He loved to teach, and always believed that there was more to learn about all parts of this wonderful thing known as, “Life.” Fire fighting and fire prevention was a team effort to Harold, and he became a mentor to many, not just in fire service, but in various other areas as well. Author Kurt Vonnegut once wrote, “I can think of no more stirring symbol of man’s humanity to man than a fire engine.” This quote accurately sums up who Harold is and always will be to all who knew him, as he was the man who would truly give anyone the shirt off his back if he could help them, no questions asked.

“I’m content,” a phrase often used by Harold, is another good way to describe this caring soul who was the first to remind anyone that he knew what mattered in his life, and what was just, “excess noise”; this solitude and understanding about life he attributed to maturity and growing older.

He was extremely generous with his time and greatly enjoyed helping others, especially when it came to anything mechanical or labor intensive. From fixing an oil burner for a friend whose heat had gone out in the middle of a blizzard, to helping a friend tow a broken down vehicle, Harold was a true, “jack of all trades” and master of them all! He loved firefighting, but that was just the tip of the iceberg to the dynamic person Harold was.

His family was priority, and he was known to do many sweet little things for his loving wife, Laura, “just because she deserved it,” as he was heard to say over the years. From warming up her car early in the morning, to surprising her with flowers, Harold was truly a gentle teddy bear; the sometimes gruff exterior still held the heart of tenderness for her and for all people. The two have been inseparable for thirty-two years, and the love they shared is a beacon of light for many.

In addition to fire service, Harold also worked various other jobs throughout the years, as he always enjoyed keeping busy and using his creative talents however he was able; he was a bus driver for Fred Dealaman Bus Service and worked for Electric Arc, Harris Steel, Rebman Excavating, Frank Mundy Excavating, Blue Ridge Oil and also plowed snow for the Township of Bridgewater for eighteen years in his 1959 B-61 Mack Truck.

He also owned and operated Rabbit Welding, R & R Services, and H. F. C. Ryan Excavating, of which he was most proud.

A life member of both the Mt. Bethel Fire Co. of Warren Township as well as the Kingwood Township Fire Company, he also served for a period of time with the Frenchtown Volunteer Fire Department while working for the Frenchtown DPW.

Harold was a volunteer for the Black River and Western Railroad and a member of Darcy Lodge No. 37, F. & A. M.

September 11, 2001 had a profound effect upon Harold, and feeling as if he needed to help, he and several of his fellow firefighters traveled into New York City and were part of the many who worked “the pile” in the aftermath of the attacks. This experience changed him, as it did most who were there, and he learned to appreciate every day just a little bit more.

In addition to family, friends, firefighting, hard work and genuine caring, Harold would want mentioned his love of flying.

He earned his private pilot’s license and eventually a helicopter certificate. Laura will always remember the anniversary he flew them over New York City; it is in this realm of thought that we know one’s spirit can never be truly locked up, and Harold is now certainly soaring free, watching and guiding all of us until we are reunited one day.

In addition to his mother, Harold was predeceased by his grandparents, Otto and Olive Kreisel, who helped to raise him and who certainly were there to welcome him when he closed his eyes on this Earth for the final time.

Surviving are his wife of twenty-seven years, Laura Jeanne Christie Ryan, with whom he joined hands in marriage on December 14, 1990 at Mt. Tabor Methodist Church, Mt. Olive, NJ; his mother-in-law and father-in-law, Carolyn & Donald Christie; three sisters-in-law and their husbands, Linda and Reed Conley, Kathy Gregory and David Rowe, and Sandie and Todd Dagnall; his nieces and nephews, Laura Gonzalez and her fiancé, Josh Ebers, Diane and her husband, Braz Dantas, Brian Gonzalez, Amie and her husband, Philip Thomas, Scott and his wife, Meghan Gregory, Justin and his wife, Ashley Dagnall, and Sarah Dagnall; his great niece and nephews, Penelope Thomas, Carter Gregory and Jason Dagnall; his brothers and sisters in emergency services; and many cherished friends.

Life celebration services will begin at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday, June 28, 2018 in the Chapel of Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services, 38 State Highway 31, Flemington, NJ, 08822.

Burial with his beloved mother and grandparents will follow at Somerset Hills Memorial Park, 95 Mt. Airy Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920.

Harold will lie in repose on Wednesday, June 27, 2018 from 2:00-4:00 and 6:00-9:00 p.m. at the funeral home, where family and friends are invited to join and celebrate his life.

A fireman’s walk through and salute will take place Wednesday evening at 8:00 p.m.

All departments wishing to send apparatus and personnel to the viewing, the funeral, the procession to the cemetery or any part thereof, are asked to kindly contact New Jersey Forest Fire Service Northern Division Fire Warden, Jason Von Oesen at 609-649-3615 or via e-mail at [email protected] Staging, timing and other instructions will be provided and updated when available.

Please visit Harold’s permanent memorial site at www.wrightfamily.com where one can light a memorial candle and leave a message of condolence and words of comfort, as well as share stories and photographs of his life.

In honoring Harold’s expressed wish for things to be kept simple when his time on this Earth was finished, in lieu of flowers, contributions in his name may be made to the FF Jeff Scheuerer Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 130, Whitehouse, NJ 08888. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated by the family.

_________________________________________________________________________

Wright & Ford, your local, family owned and operated “Life Celebration Home”

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Service Schedule

Visitation Information

Date: Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Time: 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services, "A Life Celebration Home"

Address:

38 State Highway 31
Flemington, NJ 08822

All departments wishing to send apparatus and personnel to the viewing, the funeral, the procession to the cemetery or any part thereof, are asked to kindly contact New Jersey Forest Fire Service Northern Division Fire Warden, Jason Von Oesen at 609-649-3615 or via e-mail at [email protected] Staging, timing and other instructions will be provided and updated when available.


Date: Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Time: 6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home

Address:

38 State Highway 31, Flemington, NJ, 08822

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A fireman’s walk through and salute will be take place at 8:00 p.m. Wednesday evening.

All departments wishing to send apparatus and personnel to the viewing, the funeral, the procession to the cemetery or any part thereof, are asked to kindly contact New Jersey Forest Fire Service Northern Division Fire Warden, Jason Von Oesen at 609-649-3615 or via e-mail at [email protected] Staging, timing and other instructions will be provided and updated when available.


Service Information

Date: Thursday, June 28, 2018

Time: 10:30 am - 11:15 am

Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services, "A Life Celebration Home"

Address:

38 State Highway 31
Flemington, NJ 08822

All departments wishing to send apparatus and personnel to the viewing, the funeral, the procession to the cemetery or any part thereof, are asked to kindly contact New Jersey Forest Fire Service Northern Division Fire Warden, Jason Von Oesen at 609-649-3615 or via e-mail at jason[email protected] Staging, timing and other instructions will be provided and updated when available.


Cemetery Information

Date: Thursday, June 28, 2018

Time: 11:45 am - 12:15 pm

Somerset Hills Memorial Park

Address:

95 Mt. Airy Road
Basking Ridge, NJ 07920

All departments wishing to send apparatus and personnel to the viewing, the funeral, the procession to the cemetery or any part thereof, are asked to kindly contact New Jersey Forest Fire Service Northern Division Fire Warden, Jason Von Oesen at 609-649-3615 or via e-mail at [email protected] Staging, timing and other instructions will be provided and updated when available.


Donation Information

FF Jeff Scheuerer Memorial Fund

In honoring Harold’s expressed wish for things to be kept simple when his time on this Earth was finished, in lieu of flowers, contributions in his name may be made to the FF Jeff Scheuerer Memorial Fund, P.O. Box 130, Whitehouse, NJ 08888. Envelopes will be available at the funeral home. Any and all donations are greatly appreciated by the family. Jeff was a dear friend of Harold’s and he was with Jeff the day he was tragically killed in the line of duty.

P.O. Box 130
Whitehouse, NJ 08888
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Timeline for Harold F. C. Ryan

Born: February 13, 1954
Died: June 21, 2018

Condolences for Harold F. C. Ryan

Wright & Ford Family Funeral Home and Cremation Services

Our sincerest condolences.

Please know that we are here for all of you, however we may be of service.

Respectfully,

D.J. Wright and the entire Wright & Ford Life Celebration Care Team Family

 

Edward Collins ( EJ) posted on 6/30/18

Harold you are good man I has met when I was first Jr firefighter is was honor work with you and hope we meet again please tell my father up there I say hi and missed him

 

Elaine posted on 6/27/18

In memory of Harold F. C. Ryan, Elaine lit a candle

 

Elaine posted on 6/27/18

I remember him well from the days he worked for my father. He had a great sense of humor and he was kind. My deepest sympathy. Elaine Rebman Cohen

 

Ashley Haug posted on 6/27/18

In memory of Harold F. C. Ryan, Ashley Haug lit a candle

 

Ashley Haug posted on 6/27/18

My prayers are with Harold and his family always. He was an amazing teacher with endless stories and wisdom that showed just how passionate he was. He has made my journey with the NJFFS an amazing one. I will keep his card with me and carry him always and with much love! Ashley Haug

 

Susie Stephens posted on 6/27/18

Harold was a hero with courarge and sincere kindness i was on mt bethel fire women auxiliary for mt bethel fire company . He was always there for everyone . My heart goes out to Laura and her family. Love Susie Stephens

 

Clifford Parker posted on 6/27/18

To the family of Harold Ryan from the NJFFS Div B Shop we are thinking of you, wishing you hope in the midst of sorrow, comfort in the midst of pain.” So sorry of hearing of Harold Passing

 

Carolyn and Peter Walter posted on 6/27/18

Although we only saw Harold at extended family events, we very much admired him and could tell from the stories his family tells about him, that he was dearly loved. These stories and memories he made with his family and friends are treasures they will carry with them the rest of their days. Prayerfully

 

Somerset County 4-H Horse Project posted on 6/27/18

Our deepest sympathies to Harold's family. Harold will be profoundly missed, although we did not know Harold long, we did appreciate his generosity with his time, his truck, and his patients as he came every year for past several years to annual Somerset County Fair setup for Horse Project clubs. Harold and Todd very generously donating their time, priceless. He will always be remembered and appreciated as a kind and generous volunteer. You will be missed!!

 

NJFFS Section A2 fIREFIGHTERS aSSOCIATION posted on 6/26/18

There are no words. We grieve as a brotherhood. Eternal peace Harold!

 

Paul Nicholson posted on 6/26/18

Harold certainly packed a lot into what was a shorter life than we hoped he would have. He was very interested in everything, was a master of many things and a good friend to me and many others. I will certainly miss him. He didn’t take himself seriously but took being a general all around good person very seriously. I think I read where it was said he would give someone the shirt off his back and I believe it. Sorry for your (our) loss.

 

Melissa Castellon posted on 6/26/18

Harold will be deeply missed. HIs soul forever left an impression on me and will always have a very special place in my heart. My deepest condolences to his family. Wishing you peace and love. Sending you peaceful vibes filled with strength and hugs. Melissa Castellon

 

Cindy Orenstein posted on 6/24/18

Dear Laurie We are so very sorry about Harolds passing. Our thought are with you. Sincerely, Cindy n Ken Orenstein

 

William and Sylvia Jennings posted on 6/23/18

Harold was a old and cherised friend from Warren twp. We served on My Bethel fire Company together. I will miss him. Rest in peace Harold.

 

Terri Scheuerer posted on 6/23/18

Our sincere condolences to Harolds family. His friendship to my nephew Jeff Scheuerer meant the world to us. Thank you Harold for your dedication to protecting New Jerseys forestry. We are sure your conversing with Jeff and both of you will protect your brothers and sisters who serve and protect us in earth. May he rest in peace. Bob and Terri Scheuerer

 

Karen E. Hamshar posted on 6/22/18

Harold, Here’s a candle for just in case that Jeff or you may need to illuminate the trails of Paradise.

 

Don and Carolyn Christie posted on 6/22/18

Son in law. Friend. A good man who will live on in our hearts and memories. We love you Harold. Don and Carolyn

 

Tonia posted on 6/22/18

The office will never be the same without you. You will be missed.

 

Chris Vollero NJFFS A-3 posted on 6/21/18

My heartfelt condolences to the Ryan family and his 2nd family in the NJFFS. Rest in peace brother.

 

Jason Narbonne posted on 6/21/18

Beyond a friend and brother firefighter , no words can express how great a friend Harold was to me . My prayers to his family , god speed my friend till we meet again.

 

Karen E. Hamshar posted on 6/21/18

To the family and friends of Harold, Harold will always be loved in our hearts and souls. He is now on assignment, along of Jeff keeping the angels safe and sound in the Lord’s Kingdom, keeping those trails of paradise beautiful.. Harold will always be remembered and never forgotten,either. He was very kind to everyone, especially as one of our NJFFS instructors. He is now soaring with the eagles in the blue skies of heaven Harold, Rest In Peace. Your dedicated crew from section 8 will keep things nice and green and safe from wildlife. Your crew will take over your fire watches. Love Karen E. Hamshar- section 6

 

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