Dr. Thomas Ambrose McManus, Jr., 95, a longtime resident of Little Silver, passed away peacefully in his home on May 29. Born on May 16, 1927, Tom (a/k/a Dad, Pop, Doc, and Tommy) was raised on North Center Street in Orange, NJ.
Dad graduated from Seton Hall Preparatory School in 1945, where he was a track star who competed in the Penn Relays, before which he enlisted in the United States Navy prior to the conclusion of World War II. He attended Dartmouth College on the GI Bill, where he was a member of the Chi Phi fraternity, graduating in 1949. He then earned his Doctor of Dental Surgery from the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine in 1954. And he served proudly and honorably as an officer in the Navy, ultimately attaining the rank of Lieutenant Commander.
Dad married the love of his life Mary in 1953, settled in Shrewsbury and then Little Silver, and built a large family while he thrived in his dental practice in Red Bank for over 40 years. It seemed like everyone knew “Doc.” He was passionate about dentistry as a profession and not a business, routinely providing free dental services to clergy of all types and excusing patients who were unable to pay. He loved cycling, golf, and tennis, and was very proud of his Irish heritage, having marched in St. Patrick’s Day parades as a member of the Briody Bunch. He was a parishioner of the Church of the Nativity, Fair Haven.
Dad led a relatively simple life, as simple as it could be with six children anyway. He lived in the same house for nearly 59 years, all the way up to his passing. He eschewed fancy things and travel, instead devoting his life, attention, and resources to his children, 22 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren, always making sure we were taken care of. One would regularly spot him attending baseball, football, basketball, lacrosse, soccer, and field and ice hockey games, graduations, and piano recitals, among many others, with Mom usually by his side.
Dad was predeceased by his loving wife of 66 years, Mary Tibbals McManus, in 2019, as well as his parents, Thomas and Anna McManus, his brother Charlie, sister Bernice, brother-in-law Bobby, sisters-in-law Agnes and Marianne, nephews Tommy and John, and a son, Thomas Ambrose McManus, III.
He is survived by his six children, 22 grandchildren, and three great-grandchildren: Cindy (Bob) Hogan, Kim (Stephen) Westerfield (and their son Jamie), and Bill and Kelly Hogan; Sally McManus and Katie (Sam) Ashbrook (and their daughter Olivia); Susan McManus and her fiancée Mark Hanna, Kelly (Logan) Miller, and Keegan and Anna Finn; Nancy (Greg) Pearman, and Jillian (Mike) Brennan, Samantha (Christian) Puma, Aileen (Bobby) Rutland (and their son Rory), and Emma and Kiley Pearman; Tom (Kortney) McManus, Tommy, Ryan, and Caroline McManus, and Alexis, Clayton, Tyler, and Mackenzie Pendergrast; and Ann (Mark) Donlon, and Jack, Michael, and Nick Donlon. He is also survived by his dear brother-in-law, Dr. Douglas Tibbals, and numerous nieces and nephews.
Arrangements are under the direction of John E. Day Funeral Home, Red Bank. Visitation will be held at the John E. Day Funeral Home on Thursday, June 2 from 3pm to 8pm, and a Mass of Christian Burial will be celebrated at the Church of the Nativity in Fair Haven at 10:30am on Friday, June 3. Burial will follow at Mt. Olivet Cemetery, Middletown.
Dad’s family wishes to recognize the devoted care and comfort provided by Marina Joseph and the Visiting Nurse Association during his final months of life. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to Covenant House or the Visiting Nurse Association.
Please visit Thomas’ memorial website at www.johnedayfuneralhome.com
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