Stephen P. Kirk Jr.

Mr. Kirk, 50, of Howell, died Nov. 12, 2007, at CentraState Medical Center, Freehold Township, after a courageous battle with cancer. He was born in Long Branch and was a lifelong resident of Howell. Mr. Kirk was part of the first graduating class of St. Veronica Catholic School, Howell, in 1971. He had attended Christian Brothers Academy, Lincroft section of Middletown, and was a 1975 graduate of St. Joseph High School (now Monsignor Donovan High School), Toms River. He earned an associate degree from Coastal Carolina University, Conway, S.C., while in the U.S. Marine Corps and received a Bachelor of Science degree in applied science from Thomas Edison State College in Trenton. For the past seven years, Mr. Kirk was the director of aviation for Avaya Inc., Morristown. Prior to that, he was a New Jersey state trooper, sergeant first class, in the New Jersey State Police’s Aviation Unit at Mercer County Airport (now Trenton-Mercer Airport), Ewing, where for 17 ½ years he served as a pilot assigned to the governor’s detail. Mr. Kirk was a U.S. Marine Corps veteran and received three meritorious awards from 1976 to 1979. A certified flight instructor and airline transport pilot, he served on the Board of the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) Security Council. For many years he was both a soccer coach for the Pinelanders Youth Soccer Club, Howell, and a volleyball referee in Monmouth County. He was also a member of Mensa International. Surviving are his wife, Janine Kirk; a son and a daughter, Travis and Tiffany Kirk, both at home; his in-laws, Joan Conner and husband James of Brick; two brothers-in-law and a sister-in-law, James and Christine Conner (and family) and Jeffrey Conner, all of Brick; and many cousins, aunts, uncles and friends. A funeral service was held at Clayton & McGirr Funeral Home, Freehold Township, followed by inurnment at Brig. Gen. William C. Doyle Veterans Cemetery, Arnytown section of North Hanover.