News Archive

Longtime staff member William 'Bill' Breen passes away

WWII veteran (US Navy) and member of American Legion Post 286

William "Bill" Breen served his country as a member of the US Navy during WWII, and as a member of the American Legion was very involved with the Boys State program spending over 25 years on staff at Rider University. An alumnus of the city staff, Bill assisted the program in the Boys State store and was a member of the panel of legionnaires saluted each year by the delegates and staff of ALJBS during the annual D-Day presentation, held on Tuesday night during the session.

Below is his obituary as it appeared in the Courier Post:

William H. Breen (1924 - 2011)

AGE: 87 - Pine Hill

The United States Flag does not move because the wind blew past it. The flag flies from the last breath of each American soldier who died protecting it. Our soldiers don't fight because they hate what's in front of them but because they love what's behind them. For Bill, that was his family, his church and his country. William H. Breen was an honorable family man whose soul was awoken from its sleep in the temple of the spirit and rose up to the Lord at Virtua Hospital, Berlin on Thursday December 8, 2011.

Mr. Breen was born in Sussex, NJ and had been a Pine Hill resident since 1969. His home contributed to the manpower of our nation. Bill defended his country in the U.S. Navy during WWII to uphold the American ideals of freedom. Mr. Breen worked for the NJ Dept. of Transportation for 35 years and had retired in 1980 as the Regional Maintenance Supervisor. He had been an active and longtime member of the Memorial United Methodist Church in Pine Hill where he served as a Trustee and past President of the Administrative Council. He was a longtime member of the American Legion, serving in Sussex Post 132, Atco Post 311 and Pine Hill Post 286. He had served as County Commander and County Executive Committeeman in both Sussex and Camden Counties.. He volunteered his time as a counselor for Boys State at Rider University but loved nothing more than spending time with his family being a dad and a husband, touring the country to Legion conventions and a good bowl of ice cream.

Mr. Breen is survived by his loving and dedicated wife of 41 years Louise (nee Starrett) Breen. Bill is the father of Diana Breen, Deborah Needham, and Brenda and her husband Frank Bartholomay. He is the proud grandfather of Jason, Sheila, John and Dawn. He is also survived and will be sadly missed by his sisters Dorothy & her husband Frank Sevek, Violet & her husband Norman Vreeland, Janet Dutko and his brothers Paul, Frank & his wife Betty Jean, Robert and Donald Breen. Relatives, friends and Legionnaires are invited to join the Breen family on Sunday evening between 7 and 9 pm and on Monday morning between 10 and 11 am at the LeRoy P. Wooster Funeral Home for a time of grace, a time of renewal for family and a time for healing the broken heart. A funeral ceremony will be celebrated on Monday at 11 am at the funeral home, Pastor, Rev. Patti Davis officiating. Graveside tribute and military honors will follow at Harleigh Cemetery Camden. As an expression of sympathy and in lieu of flowers donations can be made to the Memorial United Methodist Church "Lift Fund" 260 Erial Rd. Pine Hill, NJ 08021. To e-mail a condolence, please visit

originally posted December 10, 2011