David F Bartz, of Basking Ridge, NJ (and of late, Tinton Falls, NJ) passed away peacefully on July 19, 2020 at the age of 87. His primary caregiver and daughter, Cathy, her husband Pete and daughter Peggy were with him in his final days.
Dave was predeceased by his wife, Margaret Braniff Bartz. He will be greatly missed by five children, David F Bartz Jr and Susan of Portland OR, Ed Bartz and Linda Ayling of Bend OR, Thomas Bartz and Tara of Washington NJ, Peggy Bartz McPartlan, Cathy Bartz Sigismondi and Pete of Highlands, NJ. David and Margaret were happy and busy grandparents of six: Kelly & Kenzi (Dave & Sue), John, Michael & Sarah (Tom & Tara) and Collin (Peggy).
Dave was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan on January 31, 1933. He was predeceased by his three brothers and one sister. Dave joined the US Navy at an early age, serving mostly stateside, but enjoyed a Navy sail into Havana, Cuba. After the Navy Dave began a long and successful career in sales and marketing. The majority of career was in the telecommunication, starting with Michigan Bell and then with AT&T in New Jersey. Dave thoroughly enjoyed his work which combined his persuasive skills and technical savvy. Projects Dave was particularly proud of included the residence hall telephone system at Michigan State University where he had also been a student, distance applications of telephone technology that were building blocks to the Internet (including a project for the White House and President Carter). Dave enjoyed years in executive positions as a result of his drive and ingenuity; AT&T further rewarded his efforts by sponsoring Dave for advanced education opportunities at the University of PA Wharton School of Business and at the Aspen Institute, an international think tank. Although Dave came from humble beginnings, his smart mind and drive took him very far in his life, allowing him the luxury of retiring at 56.
Upon retirement from AT&T Dave volunteered for a decade with the VA in Lyons, NJ and was very active in his church, St. James Catholic Church, Basking Ridge, NJ. Neighbors appreciated Dave’s handyman skills and willingness to pitch in. He will be remembered by his family, friends and even those he had a short chat with in the local hardware store, for his huge heart.
Dave enjoyed camping with his family for many years in Michigan. Later, living in New Jersey, Dave enjoyed the Jersey shore, NYC and refurbishing Volkswagens, many of them alongside his son Tom.
His passion for enjoying people was channeled into cooking and family entertaining. A summer day wasn’t complete until Dave fired up the grill around the family pool or churned some peppermint ice cream and a Christmas season wasn’t official until virtually everyone had some of his famous snowball cookies.
Dave will be remembered as a loving father, grandfather, uncle and brother-in-law, and a valued member of his community. As his grandchildren remarked, “We always knew he loved us.” Dave’s greatest legacy is his kids and grandkids; he was proud of them and they are honored to affirm their gratitude for Dave’s life and the ways he invested it in others.
Because of current travel risks, the family will not be having funeral services at this time. But, if you would like to honor Dave, the family encourages you to donate to the American Lung Association (lung.org).
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