Giving Back

Totowa Opening Day Ceremony Will Honor Ashley Barnes

Ashley Barnes Credits: Erik Barnes

TOTOWA, NJ - A special banner will be displayed this Saturday for the borough's opening day ceremony at Lincoln Field in honor of Ashley Ann Barnes, local resident and class of 2014 graduate of Passaic Valley High School.

Ashley died unexpectedly last August at the age of 19. She was a sailor in the United States Navy and was based in Gaeta, Italy, serving as an information systems technician, when she died.

"I received news that the Totowa Police Athletic League (P.A.L.) will be displaying a banner for my sister, Ashley Barnes, during the softball opening day on April 22," said her brother Erik. "It's very nice of those  individuals who put this together."

Sign Up for E-News

Born in Philadelphia, Pa. Ashley lived in Totowa for most of her life. During high school, she played varsity field hockey. She also played softball and basketball.

According to Marianne Puluse, family friend, and vice chair of the P.A.L., Ashley played softball for many years in town.

"Rich Ruocco is the P.A.L.'s baseball commissioner who used to run the softball program and coach Ashley,"  she said. "Myself, along with Rich and George DiPasquale, P.A.L. chairman, we and the entire community, will be honoring her this Saturday. Rich will be giving the speech at the opening ceremony. We all remember her as one of the best players because she did whatever you told her to do out on the field."

Along with her family, she said the whole community was devastated by the loss.

"She was one of my daughter's good friends," she explained. "Kaitland and Ashley went to school together and took part in many of the sports together. I remember her in her uniform and running around with the other kids on the field. She was a great kid who would do anything for anybody."

Marianne also designed the banner, which was donated by Matt and Kelly Snell of Print and Cut Designs, located in Totowa.

"It reads, 'In memory of Ashley Barnes,'" she said, adding it will detail a softball design on it shaped like a heart, with angel wings coming out of it that reads "friend, 'teammate, hero" on it. The banner will also show her softball uniform number on it - 27 - because she was born on Sept. 27.

"We were all devastated when we found out she passed suddenly and you can't believe this could happen to someone so young," she noted. "My daughter had just seen and talked to her before she returned back to Italy after being on leave."

She reemphasized that Ashley was someone who deserves to be remembered.

"A lot of kids come through the P.A.L. program but Ashley was special. She's never going to be forgotten."

Erik echoed the sentiment. 

"I miss her dearly and I know she would love this." 

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

Passaic Valley

Officials Say Recently Passed County Budget Built on 'Fiscally Sound Policies'

March 19, 2018

PATERSON, NJ – Saying it reflects “fiscally sound policies, strong budgetary flexibility, proactive increases to manage volatile expense line items, including significant reserves for workers’ compensation, health benefits, and liability insurance, and an overall net debt of 1% of market value,” the Passaic County Board of Chosen Freeholders adopted the 2018 budget on ...

Upcoming Events

Wed, March 21, 1:00 PM

Totowa Public Library, Totowa

'Home Again' Screening

Arts & Entertainment

Wed, March 21, 5:15 PM

Totowa Public Library, Totowa

QuickBooks workshop


Sat, March 24, 10:15 AM

Totowa Public Library, Totowa

Mindful Saturdays

Health & Wellness

Sat, April 28, 8:00 AM

College of St. Elizabeth, Morristown

Conference and Resource Fair Promotes Advocacy ...

Education Giving Back

Woodland Park resident becomes Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteer

March 20, 2018

WOODLAND PARK, NJ - Cynthia Sobelman, a resident of Woodland Park, was sworn in as a Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteer for Passaic County CASA on Tuesday, March 6, at the Passaic County Superior Courthouse in Paterson.

Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteers work one-on-one with children, ensuring that each child receives needed services and achieves permanency in a safe, ...