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James S. Lacava


James S. Lacava, age 78, of Woodland Park, formerly of Wayne, passed Wednesday, September 27, 2017 .

He was born and raised in Paterson having graduated from Seton Hall Prep High School in South Orange. He continued his education at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School of Business where he graduated with a Bachelor of Science Degree in Accounting. He served an accounting internship at a firm in Paterson and once he received the title of CPA he worked for the Edward T. Boyle Firm in Hackensack. He later opened his own accounting firm on Ward Street in Paterson and eventually secured a position as Comptroller of the City of Hackensack. He served as Comptroller for twenty years and served another fifteen years as the City Manager of Hackensack before retiring in 2005. Although he officially retired in 2005 he was still working for several private clients, family, and friends up until last year. He was a member of several occupation related organizations including the NJ Society of CPA’s, the American Institute of CPA’s and GFOA (Government Finance Officers of America).

When James was fifteen years old he went to a Grammar School graduation party in Paterson where he met a cute thirteen year old name Beatrice McCauley. This chance encounter would lead to several years of dating and a proposal of marriage, after asking Beatrice’s father, at the family home located at 341 Trenton Avenue in Paterson. They married on June 2, 1962 at Saint Brendan’s RC Church in Clifton. After a reception at the Bow & Arrow in West Orange they honeymooned in Bermuda and Nassau in the Bahamas. They have enjoyed a “loving couple” marriage, as characterized by a friend recently, of fifty-five years.

James will be remembered as a loving family man who was strong willed, meticulous to a fault. To help understand his fastidious nature one only has to hear two examples: the first is about how he was fussy regarding the angle of a staple in document as you can’t fold over the pages correctly if the staple is not on a 45 degree angle and how he had business cards printed up with the exact way a bartender should make his Rob Roy cocktail. He was definitely a Type-A personality but there was usually a method to his madness. His family has fond memories of time at the NJ Shore town of Lavallette and over twenty years of spending the month of March at Marco Island in Florida.

He was very active in his community having been a member of the Lions Club, UNICO, and ARC all of Hackensack, the Italian Circle of Paterson, the Do Good House in Totowa, the Moose Lodge 399 of Ortley Beach, and the Packanack ROMEO’s.

James was also very giving of his time when it came to youth sports. He volunteered many hours as a CYO basketball coach at Immaculate Heart of Mary Church in Wayne, served as an American Legion and Little League baseball coach, and officiated at high school football games for many years. His dedication earned him a listing in the DePaul High School of Wayne’s Hall of Fame and entry into the Amateur Football’s Passaic County Chapter of the National Football Foundation’s Hall of Fame. He was also huge NY Giants fan and has been an original season ticket holder since 1976.

He was a devoted parishioner of Immaculate Heart of Mary RC Church in Wayne for many years.

James was the loving husband of Beatrice (McCauley) Lacava; devoted father of the late James Lacava (2010), Lynn Kahn and her husband Eric of Florham Park, and Beth DeMayo of Lincoln Park; he was the cherished grandfather of Amanda-Marie DeMayo and Nicole and Courtney Kahn; he was also the loved brother of the late Letitia Pellosie (2016), and uncle of Carmine Pellosie III and his wife Jennifer.

Friends may visit with the family from 3-9 PM on Monday, October 2, 2017 at the Vander May Wayne Colonial Funeral Home, 567 Ratzer Road in Wayne.

Funeral services will be held 9:30 AM on Tuesday, October 3, 2017 from the funeral home then to Immaculate Heart of Mary RC Church, 580 Ratzer Road, Wayne where a 10:30 AM Funeral Mass will be offered.

Interment will be in Holy Sepulchre Cemetery, Totowa.

In lieu of flowers memorial donations to the James G. Lacava Memorial Scholarship Fund, c/o DePaul High School, 1512 Alps Road, Wayne, NJ 07470 would be greatly appreciated. 

Guest Book


Our prayers and condolences on your loss....I had many an opportunity as HFD local 2081 Vice President to discuss business with James and he always did right by us, very honest and upstanding man, may he rest in peace and thank you for your service to the City of Hackensack.

Frank Pinto Jr


My mom was Jim's secretary for most of his tenure in Hackensack. He was a great guy and a highly respected City manager, and from what I was told, an expert regarding municipal finances. Always treated my mom and our family like one of his own.

Steve Kalman


you know how we felt about Jimmy and all our years of friendship - our prayers and love go to his family

Ray & AngieVivino


"Sir James",It was a pleasure to know you and work with you for many great years. Hackensack has lost a great friend.Condolences to Bea and family.

Rick & Debbie Salkin


Jim - you were always Stash to all of us old old friends from Paterson. My Dad always called you "son # 3" and you were always like a true member of our family. We've had so many laughs and great memories for all these past 60 plus years. You were the best friend anyone could have and there will never be another man like you - always kind and gentle to everyone. I will miss you until we meet again. Love Bo (ski)!!

Babe Cappetta


I had the Honor of knowing Mr. Lacava as a Police officer with Hackensack. A finer man you couldn't find, he was tough but fair and his dedication to the City of Hackensack was beyond reproach.James S. Lacava may you rest in Peace. You my Friend are looking down from Heaven watching over your Loved ones.

Charles D. Redstone, Jr.


Jim, Thank you for hiring me, giving me the opportunity to work with you and to serve the City of Hackensack where I grew up. It was an honor to work with you and a pleasure of making many fond memories over the years! "Heads Down" I will always remember hearing you say that as you came through our door! RIP you earned your wings. Condolences to Bea and the entire family.

Denise Stellakis Diaz & Augie Diaz


May God always be with you my friend. We had a lot of fun at Marco Island Especialy our Zepole run. You will be missed by all. Edie and I send our deepest condolences to the Lacava family. Love always Bob and Edie

Bob DiGiorgio


Thoughts and prayers being sent from the Jaeger Family. We are so sorry for your loss.

Christina Jaeger Lis


Dear Bea & family, Thoughts & prayers to you !! Jimmy will be missed on Marco Island, I will miss taking him up the elevator!! All my Love, JoEllyn

JoEllyn Grandinetti


May care and love of those around you provide comfort and peace to get you through the days ahead. Our most sincere condolences.

Olga Barone-Allan


Jimmie, I'll never forget you and my uncle "Sportsie"(Joey) at the 3rd ave coffee shop in Riverside. Youcame to our Eastside basketball(guys and girls) games regularly.You are missed already. RIP

pete rendina


Dear Bea, please accept my deepest sympathy on James passing you are all in our thoughts and prayers. I Graduated Eastside in 1959 & knew Jim from high school. Great guy. Carmen Emmolo

Mr Carmen Emmolo


Jim it was an honor to know you. You were a friend who I will never forget. My condolences to Bea and the family. Till we meet again, rest easy. Tina

Tina Sieck


Jim was a key member of the Hackensack Lions Club. We all will miss his insight, guidance and generosity. RIP good friend.

Charles Ticho


Dear Bea & family, So very sorry for your loss. I loved it when he would stop by to check on me. Such a sweet man. He will be missed. Pat

Pat Hallock


Dear Bea and family- We loved Jim and he was a big part of our careers working with the city of Hackensack. He was an excellent city manager and a real people person that showed great leadership. We will miss him...

Fire Chief Richard Johnson and his wife Patti


I had the honor of working with Jim for many years at City Hall. He was a great man and even a greater boss! My sincere condolences to Bea and the Lacava family.

Mary M Petrocelli

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