Martin Andrew (Marty) Doonan, 50, of Vernon, died on Friday, Nov. 17, 2017, after a long illness.

Known as Marty by his friends and family, he was best known for his kindness, generosity and his free spirit. He was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., and lived there until his family moved to Vernon when he was eight. He attended Immaculate Conception School in Franklin and Pope John XXIII High School in Sparta. He also attended the New York Institute of Technology in Long Island following high school. After technical school, Marty followed his father's path and became an Ironworker and member of Ironworkers Local 40, based in New York. Marty was proud to call himself an Ironworker, and was even more proud of the indelible imprint he left on the skyline of the world's most famous city. He retired in 2001 due to a disability. In the years following, he spent much of his time in Arizona, having lived there for a number of years before recently returning home to New Jersey.

Skilled with his hands, Marty was a natural and gifted mechanic. Automobiles were his passion. He collected them and enjoyed working on them. Over his lifetime, he maintained an always changing collection of cars and trucks, which ranged from sports cars to large trucks with many others in between. Subtlety was not a quality Marty looked for when choosing his next ride — it had to either look good or move fast. Frequently, it had to do both.

Those fortunate to call Marty a friend knew him as loyal, genuine, giving and to be the “salt of the earth”, as he often called other kindred spirits. True to his generous spirit and his desire to help his community and others, Marty was active with the Vernon Township Ambulance Squad, beginning as a teenager, initially at the encouragement of his late Aunt, Peggy Doonan, and continuing for many years after.

His Catholic faith was of quiet but great importance to him and was a constant source of his strength. Nothing was more important to Marty than family, and he was deeply devoted to his parents and siblings, his late Uncle, John Joe Curley, and his nieces and nephews, who were a frequent source of joy for him. Most memorable times of his life were spent with his ex-wife, and longtime love, Rose.

He is survived by his parents, John & Rita, of Vernon; his sister, Carmen Wager, of Vernon; his brother, John Paul, and his wife, Liza, of Fair Haven; his brother, Mark Doonan, of Yonkers, NY; his brother, Matthew Doonan, and his wife, Diane, of Mullica Hill; his youngest brother, James Joseph (“JJ”) Doonan, of Vernon, and his seven nieces and nephews- Dylan, Stephanie, Nora, Patrick, Kevin, Matthew and Bridget.

Friends and family are invited to Ferguson-Vernon Funeral Home, 241 Route 94(1 Vanderhoof Court for GPS), Vernon, NJ on Friday, November 24 from 2-6 p.m. Funeral Mass will be held at 10 a.m., Saturday, November 25 at St. Francis DeSales R. C. Church in Vernon. Interment to follow at Glenwood Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Vernon Township Ambulance Squad. Information and condolences can be found at www.fergusonvernonfuneralhome.com.