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John Edward Wilkinson, 52, Loving Husband and Father
John Edward Wilkinson passed away peacefully and unexpectedly at home in Scotch Plains on Sunday, June 16th at the young age of 52.
The son of Marilyn and Dr. Robert G. Wilkinson, John was born in Boston, Massachusetts on February 8, 1967 and raised in Hingham. He attended St. Sebastian’s School in Needham, MA ,then graduated from Boston College in 1989 with his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics. It was at BC where he met the love of his life, Cheryl (Horne) Wilkinson from Westfield, NJ. John and Cheryl married on July 15th following their graduation and they started their life in New Jersey. This would be their 30th anniversary year. He started working and furthered his education in the evenings graduating from Montclair State University in May, 1994 with a Master of Business Administration and attained his Certificate of Public Accountancy (CPA). John had worked as both an Accountant and Director of Operations at Gallo Wine and the past thirteen years at Southern Glazers Wine and Spirits.
John was a wonderful and loving husband to Cheryl and the father of his three cherished children: Lindsey, John, Jr. and Daniel. His family was the most important part of his life and he could not have been a more proud dad. He coached each of his children in the sports they participated and he loved: hockey, softball and baseball. A former hockey and baseball player himself, he could not wait to get home from work in order to help coach or watch them in their various activities.
His integrity level was beyond reproach and his work ethic, tireless. Known for his compassion, quick wit and trash talking, especially when rooting for his beloved Red Sox, Patriots, or Bruins, John had many good friends during his lifetime and enjoyed their company as well as his two sons on the golf course. John was larger than life to all that knew him.
He will always be remembered for his positive outlook on life, his competitiveness in participating in any game that he played, his generosity, and especially for his love and caring for his family.
John is survived by his wife, Cheryl, and their children, Lindsey, John, Jr. and Daniel; his parents, Marilyn and Robert Wilkinson of Hanover and Cataumet, Massachusetts; brother Robert Wilkinson and his wife, Roberta of Canton, MA; sister Mary Leonard and her husband, John of Pembroke, MA; sister Colleen Shaw and her husband, Harold of Norwell, MA; sister Catherine Duggan of Canton, MA; sister Bridget Fernquist and her husband, Peter of Hingham, MA; and many loving nieces, nephews, cousins, aunts and uncles.
A visitation for family and friends will be held on Friday, June 21st at Higgins and Bonner Echo Lake Funeral Home at 582 Springfield Ave., Westfield, NJ from 4-8 pm. A funeral Mass will be held on Saturday, June 22, at St. Helen’s Church, 1600 Rahway Ave. in Westfield at 10 am.
In lieu of flowers, a college fund has been arranged for the Wilkinson children. Donations may be made to, “Lindsey, John and Daniel Wilkinson” and sent to the Horne family, 627 Hanford Place, Westfield, NJ 07090.