In Memory of

Barbara

Jacone

(Santarsiero)

Obituary for Barbara Jacone (Santarsiero)

Barbara Jacone, 78, Mother, Matriarch and Caretaker to All, passed away on Thursday, December 7th, 2023.

Visitation will be on Monday, Dec. 11th from 4-8 p.m. at Shook’s Cedar Grove Funeral Home, 486 Pompton Ave., Cedar Grove, N.J. Funeral Services will begin on Tuesday, Dec. 12th at 8:45 a.m. at the funeral home. A Mass of Christian Burial will take place at 10:00 a.m. at St. Thomas the Apostle R.C. Church, Bloomfield, N.J. with interment to follow at Immaculate Conception Cemetery, Upper Montclair, N.J. Memories and condolences may be shared at shookscedargrove.com.

She was born in Newark, N.J. to Theodore and Vincenza “Jean” (DiVizio) Santarsiero. Growing up in Newark’s North Ward, her life revolved around her grandparent’s home on Ridge Street, which was the nucleus of her extended family of aunts, uncles and cousins that grew up alongside her, and helped raise her after her father passed away when she was only six. It was there with all of them that she found love and security, and she was instilled with the importance of the bonds of family, and learned about tradition, respect, and compassion. There may have been little money and many hardships to endure, but growing up there left a deep and lasting imprint on her soul, and she always considered those days to be some of the best days of her life.

Barbara was a graduate of the New Jersey Beauty Culture Academy, and dedicated her career to the artistry of hairstyling; first as the owner and operator of Bazar Salon in Belleville, and then for over 35 years at Salon 25 of South Orange and Springfield before joining Salon Montage of Springfield. In the course of her 58 years as a beautician she acquired a large and loyal following that she was dedicated to. Many of her clients became lifelong friends, and she took immense pride in making them look and feel beautiful when they stepped out of her chair. Her work ethic was extraordinary. She never missed a day of work due to illness. She would stand on her feet at her station for 10 hours a day and style hair with broken limbs, or suffering the effects of chemotherapy, and power through without a complaint. In her mind, it wasn’t even a question. That’s what you were supposed to do. Her clients counted on her, and she would not disappoint them.

She married her beloved husband Thomas Jacone in 1965 and they moved to Belleville where their children Thomas Jr, and Carin were born, before moving to Bloomfield, which they called home for 51 years and where they raised their children.

As accomplished and successful as she was in her career, Barbara always considered her family to be her primary job, and biggest accomplishment. She devoted herself to putting their needs and wishes before her own, She was utterly selfless, and fiercely devoted and loyal to her family and friends. Along with her husband, her goal in life was to create a warm, loving and welcoming home and draw her loved ones in around her and hold them close. She succeeded magnificently. Her door was always open, and the front light always on. There was always coffee on the counter, and food on the stove. There was always room at her table to pull up another chair. And everyone did.

She happily entertained multiple generations of cousins, her and her husband’s friends, and her children’s friends. Barbara was a superb homemaker, adorning her home with the love and care that reflected her passion for cooking and decorating. She was an excellent cook; Christmas Eve dinners, holiday feasts and summer Sunday dinners for 20 at her home at the Jersey shore were treasured moments and showcased her commitment to making lasting memories for her children and her family. Her home was her castle, refuge, pride and joy. She could always be found painting walls and sanding furniture, cleaning floors and planting flowers. It was all an expression of her love for her family and her desire to do her best for them.

She enjoyed family trips to Lake George, visits to Atlantic city to try her luck at the slots, and dinners out on Saturday nights. She loved to dance and was always first out on the dance floor at weddings and parties. The songs of Bobby Darin, Johnny Mathis, Paul Anka and Frank Sinatra were her favorites. They were the soundtrack of her life. She loved beautiful clothes and had a flair for fashion. She was always impeccably dressed for every occasion.

She radiated compassion and empathy. During her husband's long, valiant and ultimately unsuccessful battle with cancer, she nursed him for years without question or complaint. She was her mother's primary caretaker for ten years as she battled Alzheimer’s disease. For decades she helped care for a beloved aunt who was handicapped and bedridden, and for an uncle who was old and alone. Illness and suffering in others did not intimidate her. It brought out the best in her nature, and she would open her heart. Everyone said she missed her true calling and should have been a nurse. She was a notorious soft touch who felt sorry for anyone who was lonely or alone, or down on their luck.

A stroke caused her to suffer mightily in the last year of her life. Even in the depths of her own illness, when she could not care for or help herself, she worried about her children and her cousins, and was trying to comfort those around her who were in distress. She was a thoroughbred in every sense of the word.

She is predeceased by her beloved parents Theodore Santarsiero and Vincenza “Jean” Santarsiero Strubbe; her stepfather Ernest Strubbe; and her devoted husband Thomas Jacone. She is survived by her loving children, Thomas Jacone, Jr. and his partner, Gregg Grieve; Carin Lupo and her husband, Steve; her cherished cousins, Joanne Sica; Frank and Alexis Sica; Vincent and Marianne Mauro; dear friend Domenica Fernicola, and sister-in-law Marie Griffoul and her husband Greg.

A devoted parishioner of St. Thomas the Apostle Church in Bloomfield, Barbara found solace and community within its walls for many years.

In lieu of flowers donations in memory of Barbara may be made to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, 501 St. Jude Place, Memphis, TN 38105.