Marc Steven Samfeld
November 10, 1953-September 1, 2021
Marc was born at Elizabeth General hospital, the first and only child of Hugo and Rose Samfeld. He grew up in Roselle Park in the two-family home of his grandparents, Sam and Jenny Felber. His mother was a homemaker and his dad was a butcher. At one time, his parents owned and operated a children’s clothing shop on Elmora Avenue in Elizabeth called Little Folks.
Marc had a disability that was not picked up until approximately age 3; his thyroid did not function properly causing cognitive delays. Marc was a savant with dates and numbers. He loved to entertain those within his company, asking “What day were you born?” He would then tell you the day of the week your birthdate would fall, in the current year and as far back as the year you were born.
Rose’s best friend was Pauline Illard. Their children became childhood playmates and lifetime friends. Marc’s mother passed away in 1986. Upon her passing, his dad wisely sought housing for Marc to establish himself so that he would have a place to call home when his dad also passed. Marc’s dad passed in March of 1991. As was Hugo’s expressed wish, Pauline’s older daughter Wendy was appointed legal guardian of Marc. Along with husband Ray, they have served in that capacity for thirty years. Marc was living in a supervised apartment in Union when guardianship transferred to Wendy. He remained there from 1989 to September 2009. In 2009, Marc was diagnosed with lymphoma. We had to tell him that he had cancer. When asked what he understood about having cancer, Marc replied, “I might lose my hair.” He survived the chemotherapy; having to learn to walk again but he said it loud and clear, “I want to live!” Since 2012 Marc’s services have been provided by Everas Community Services. He most recently was living in a medical group home in Union. Throughout thismore than thirty-year relationship, as his guardians, we could not have given him all that he needed without the participation of others- his dear cousin Susie, our immediate families, and the two agencies that provided dedicated staff and housing, Our House, Inc. and Everas Community Services. Most recently, Marc participated in the daycare activities provided by SarahCare in Mountainside.
Marc tested positive for Covid 19 in March 2020. He did not require hospitalization. Plagued with a swallow issue, Marc often had aspiration pneumonia. The isolation required of the pandemic wore on Marc. He was in a slow decline this past year, often not having much appetite. Marc’s greatest pleasures had always been a good meal and most any 1950’s sit-com. He maintained his sense of humor and interest in those around him. He was a fighter- but has to fight no longer. Rest in peace dear friend.
If you feel so inclined, donations may be made in memory of Marc to Everas Community Services, 24 World’s Fair Drive, Somerset, NJ 07083 and SarahCare Adult Day Care, 1115 Globe Avenue, Mountainside, NJ 07092
Marc was 4 or 5 years old- we dressed him up in my leggings, hat, and car coat for Halloween. Given explicit instructions not to say anything, we went to the Uniondale Shop-Rite where our fathers worked. We asked at the meat counter for a pound of bologna. Hugo never recognized Marc until my mother made it clear what we had done. This story always made us smile.
Marc loved Pauline’s cooking. He and Rose joined us for supper on a Friday night as both our dads were working late. Mom had made spaghetti and meatballs. Marc finished his plate, climbed into his mother’s lap and proceeded to eat hers!
Ray always teased Marc about wanting a smelly cigar and virgin pina colada- this always got a chuckle out of Marc.