HAZLET, NJ — William “Buddy” Franklin, 57, of Hazlet died on November 25 at Bayshore Community Hospital after a courageous four-month battle with cancer.

He was a devoted husband, father and brother who was full of life and always there when you needed a helping hand, a smile or a laugh.

Born on the U.S. Army military base in Stuttgart, Germany, Buddy grew up in South Belmar before moving to Hazlet 29 years ago. For the past 15 years, he was a Freemason, serving in 2013 as Worshipful Master at the Caesarea Masonic Lodge 64, Keyport.

Sign Up for Belmar/Lake Como Newsletter
Our newsletter delivers the local news that you can trust.

Every Sunday, he and his daughter, Rebecca, spent time at the Menlo Park Veterans Home in Edison, bringing the veterans to church. And for more than a decade, Buddy was instrumental in the Freemasons’ participation in the Arc of Monmouth County’s annual walk. 

Buddy was employed by Shop-Rite for 17 years, starting in Belmar in 1978 and working at several other locations, including Middletown, where he met his wife, Cheryl. For the past 15 years, he worked for Mitre Corp. at its Eatontown location, where he served as facilities and engineering support manager.

Buddy is predeceased by his father, Daniel Joseph Franklin, and mother, Mary Jane Franklin, and brother, Daniel Franklin. 

He is survived by his wife, Cheryl Franklin; two daughters, Jessica and Rebecca; brother, Sean Franklin of Lake Como and his partner, Cathy Goetz; three sisters, Dawn Franklin of Horn Church, England, and her fiance, Daniel Negus, Elizabeth Franklin of San Antonio, and her partner, Dee Smith, and Lorraine Franklin of San Antonio; his uncle and aunt, Antonio and Robin Sportiello of Piscataway, as well as many nieces and nephews.

Visitation will be on Saturday, November 30 at Evergreen Memorial Home, 1735 Route 35, Middletown, from 4 to 8 p.m. with a Masonic service at 7 p.m. A celebration of Buddy’s life will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. at Caesarea Lodge 64, 60 Osborn Street, Keyport.