Freas (‘Skip’) L. Hess III

Sparta /
| 10 Nov 2020 | 04:39

    It is with deepest sadness that we announce the passing of “Skip” (Freas L.) Hess III on Oct. 28, 2020, at the age of 70.

    He was the loving husband of Patti Hess for 43 years and devoted father to Laurie Hess, Stephen Hess, and his pup, Scooter.

    He was resident of Green Township, N.J., for the past 19 years and a former resident of Sparta, N.J., for 18 years.

    Skip’s 24 years of coping with a severely damaged heart came to a tragic end after a month and a half of heart procedures and lung issues. He never stopped fighting to stay on this earth with his family, but God finally wanted him in Heaven.

    Born in Somerville, N.J., Skip was predeceased by his parents, Freas L. Hess Jr. and Eileen Veghte Hess; and his oldest sister, Joan Demko. He has two surviving sisters: Nancy Brown and Debbie Warren.

    Skip attended Somerville schools, where he developed a talent and love of playing the drums. He was in his first dance band at the age of 11 and continued to play his drums throughout high school, college, and in the Army Band, when he was drafted during the Vietnam War. His love of drums continued to be a big part of his life as he went on to play with several dance bands and share his skills with aspiring drummers. One of his proudest moments was to perform with Manhattan Transfer while the usual drummer was sick.

    Skip attended Wilkes College in Pennsylvania, where he met the love of his life, Patti. He graduated with a B.S. in business, and after his marriage, he earned a degree in computer science from Chubb Institute. Skip left his bank manager job to work as a systems analyst for PSE&G until his massive heart attack in 1996 brought a significant change to his life. He was placed on permanent disability from PSE&G due to the severe damage to his heart; he utilized the three hours per day of work that he was limited to by teaching computers to the staff at Reverend Brown School, and eventually to the women in Project Self Sufficiency.

    Skip enjoyed watching the Yankees win and visiting Cape Cod with his family. He never tired of listening to a wide range of music in the comfort of his living room with his wife, and often with his two children.

    Skip brought laughter, kindness, and thoughtfulness into the lives of his family and friends. Despite the physical limitations he experienced during his adult life, he always maintained an upbeat personality and placed the welfare of his loved ones above his own. Skip will be deeply missed by those whose lives he touched.

    Memorial donations may be made to the American Heart Association, 1 Union Street #301, Robbinsville, NJ 08691, or a charity of choice.