Arts & Entertainment

37th Annual Bloomfield Irishman of the Day March 4 at Fitzgerald's

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William Coffey
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Patrick Shawn Grady
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Paul R. Wilson
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BLOOMFIELD, NJ - The Irishman of the Day Committee will be honoring three outstanding citizens who have dedicated their lives to their rich Irish heritage and to the Township of Bloomfield March 4 at Fitzgerald's 1928. 

The 37th annual event will honor William Coffey, Patrick Grady, and Paul Wilson. Starting at noon, the afternoon will include a traditional Irish lunch, all beers, wine and sodas, door prizes, and  Super 50/50 . Proceeds go to Cynthia Carney to assist with her rising medical costs. Admission is $75 per person. 

Meet William Coffey: 

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Born, and raised in Bloomfield to a large extended Irish - American family, I am the only remaining born Coffey still living in Bloomfield. Graduating from Bloomfield High School in 1977, I later joined the Bloomfield Fire Department in May of 1981. Obtaining the rank of Captain, I retired from the department in December of 2011 with 30 years served. Since that time I have been working for The American Red Cross as a part time Health and Safety Instructor teaching life saving practices to corporate, and community classes. I also work for RWJ Barnabas Health System as a Fire Safety Instructor to grammar school children in northern New Jersey.

In 1983 I married a Bloomfield girl Susan Nyman ( BHS class of 1979 ).  We have been married 33 years, living in Bloomfield, raising two sons, Keith ( 27 ), and Connor ( 25 ). Both graduates of BHS. 

I was involved with The Sacred Heart Athletic Association from 1976 through 1984. During that time I served in various positions, from, referee to President, while coaching various boys teams.  I also enjoyed coaching and assisting social, and sporting clubs our boys were involved in.

Being my father Martin Coffey received this honor 35 years ago, I am very honored a second member of our family has been chosen.  

Proud to be an American first, and of Irish descent, I thank the committee, and hope to enjoy this luncheon for many years to come.

Meet Patrick Grady:

Patrick Shawn Grady was born in January 1967 to Richard and Shirley Grady. Patrick is the youngest of three children.

A lifelong resident of Bloomfield, Patrick attended Carteret School and South Junior High.  Patrick played football for Bloomfield High School and graduated in 1985.

Patrick’s first job was working as a landscaper for Martin O’Boyle.  Later he changed fields and was employed by the Bloomfield DPW.  In December of 2002, Patrick began the career he was born to do and was sworn into the Bloomfield Fire Department where he currently serves as a Captain.  Patrick is also a member of the Bloomfield Fire Department Relief Association.

As a child Patrick played for Bloomfield southern little league, Babe Ruth baseball league and currently plays in an over 40 baseball league.  He also trains and competes in Strongman competitions where he went on to win the masters division in New Hampshire in 2015.  Growing up Patrick was a boy scout for many years.  He went on to achieve the highest rank attainable, The Eagle Scout, at the age of 16.

Patrick married his wife, Tracy, 13 years ago and they have two beautiful daughters, Jessica and Taylor.

Meet Paul R. Wilson:

Paul was born and raised in Glen Ridge, NJ and attended Sacred Heart School in Bloomfield, NJ and continued his education at Essex Catholic High School in Newark, NJ. While attending Sacred Heart joined the Boy Scouts of America Troop 14 attaining the rank of Eagle Scout in 1970. Also in 1970, Paul hiked 100 miles in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains at Philmont Scout Ranch in Cimarron NM with his good friend John Pierson. Paul was subsequently awarded Vigil Member of the Order of the Arrow for his volunteer work for Tamarack Council, BSA.

Paul and his wife Kathleen moved to Bloomfield in 1983 and had two children, Emma and Evan, both of whom attended and graduated from Bloomfield schools and thereafter both graduated from Richard Stockton College. Paul and Kathy have one granddaughter Scarlett.

Paul rejoined scouting when his son Evan joined Pack 28 at Fairview School in Bloomfield, NJ. Having some experience with the program Paul was elected Cubmaster by the Pack committee and served for four years in that position. While serving as Cubmaster, Paul relied heavily on the great support from Joe Murray who served as Assistant Cubmaster for many years.

When Paul’s son Evan wanted to continue on with Boy Scouts in 1998, he found Troop 22 at St Thomas the Apostle Church Bloomfield, NJ under the leadership of Scoutmaster Karl Hughes. Paul was asked to join the troop committee and has been a member ever since.

Known in the troop as “Mr. Wilson” Paul attended numerous camping trips teaching many of the scout skills he learned as a young man, knots, fire building, cooking, and first aid among others. Mr. Wilson enjoyed cooking the most and always made “something delicious.” Paul has over 1200 miles with the “Hike of the Month Club” within the troop. He has led many yearend trips for the troop including trips to the US Naval Academy in Annapolis, MD and to Martha’s Vineyard, MA. Paul attended the weeklong summer camp at Camp Rodney, MD for seven years.  

Paul attended Rutgers University, Newark, NJ and earned a bachelor’s degree in Economics.

Paul has been employed in networking industry since the early 1980’s and is currently employed by AT&T as a Cyber Security Engineer.

 

 

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Bloomfield

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