Joseph (‘Todd’) T. Duffy

| 09 Feb 2021 | 01:00

Joseph (“Todd”) T. Duffy, a retired Byram Township Police Detective, went home to be with the Lord on Monday, Feb. 1, 2021, at home in Vernon, N.J., while holding the love his life’s hand. He was 69. He fought a 5-year courageous battle with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

Todd was born and raised in Brooklyn, N.Y., on Feb. 17, 1951, to Joseph and Joan (Paul) Duffy, and has been a part of the Beaver Lake, Franklin, N.J., community since his childhood. He proudly served in the U.S. Coast Guard from 1969 to 1975. Todd is a graduate of St. John’s University and American Academy McAllister Institute, becoming a third-generation funeral director, joining the family business at Joseph G. Duffy Funeral Home in Brooklyn, N.Y.

In his mid-30s, Todd made the decision to follow his dream of working in law enforcement. He was hired as a Byram Township police officer in 1988, and promoted to detective in 2003. During the last 20 years of his career, Todd was the D.A.R.E. officer and ran the program since its inception. He was and still is affectionally referred to by his students as “Officer Duffy.” After 25 years of dedicated service to the Township of Byram and its residents, Todd retired on Dec. 31, 2012, to travel with his wife, Jennifer, and enjoy spending time with his family, beloved grandchildren, and the lifelong friends he made throughout his life.

Todd was a devoted and loving husband, father, stepfather, grandfather, brother, uncle, cousin and an adored friend, respected and loved by everyone who crossed his path. Along with spending time with his wife and family, he enjoyed music, golfing, fishing, riding his mountain bike, hunting at the family farm in Pennsylvania with his brother and a few of his close friends, history (especially anything to do with the Civil War), and watching American Pickers. Todd was selfless, always putting others first, and spent a lifetime being a dedicated volunteer helping others in his community. To name a few of his volunteering efforts, he was a lifetime member of the Lakeland Emergency Squad, a member of PBA 138, where he served on the board and volunteered at countless functions, coached his daughters softball teams, volunteered time at numerous fundraising events, assisted search and rescue immediately after 9/11, and continued to volunteer after his diagnosis of ALS until his body no longer allowed him to at a local hospital, nursing home and the Salvation Army. Many gave him thank you cards, notes, and drawings expressing their appreciation for his kindness and support throughout the years. They meant so much to him that he saved each one of them and would re-read them often.

Unfortunately, in 2016 Todd was diagnosed with ALS, more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease. He battled with grace and dignity, never once losing his well-known positive outlook. He maintained his zest for life and adapted as needed over the years to make the absolute best of it all, 100% of the time. In true Todd fashion, as an inspiration to all, he focused solely on the good in an otherwise dispiriting situation. When he was told of his diagnosis he never asked why me, just the opposite, why not me. He participated in programs to do all he could to assist those researching the illness, hoping his part would help find a cure, saving others from this dreadful disease.

Todd is survived by his loving wife, Jennifer (Cousin) Duffy; daughters, Dana (Duffy) and Reggie Ingram of Middletown, N.Y., Kimberly (Duffy) and Eric Travieso of Martinez, Calif; stepdaughters, Hunter Bisanzio of Wayne, N.J., and Alexandria Bisanzio of Vernon; grandchildren, Jeter, Jackson, and Brooklynn Travieso of Martinez, Calif.; brother- and sister-in-law, Kenneth and Joanne (Thees) Duffy of Naples, Fla.; sister and brother-in-law, Barbara (Duffy) and Robert Regal of Armonk, N.Y; and several nieces, nephews, great-nieces and nephews, cousins and countless friends who became family.

Todd is predeceased by his father, Joseph G. Duffy, Jr; and his mother, Joan (Paul) Duffy.

Due to Covid, services will be private. They will be livestreamed on Facebook through St. Francis De Sales Church in Vernon at 11:30 a.m. on Monday, Feb. 15.

The family will hold a Celebration of Life in Todd’s honor at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to one of his favorite charities or to Project ALS has raised over $70 million for research. Their hallmark is collaborative ALS research, researchers who once worked individually, now work together towards a shared goal.

Private cremation services are under the direction of Ferguson-Vernon Funeral Home, Vernon.