Ronald J. Portz, 78, of Barnegat, NJ, son of the late Joseph and Elizabeth Portz, passed peacefully on Sunday, November 5, 2017 surrounded by his loving family. His father, Joseph died in a motor vehicle accident in 1945 when he was six years old. He was raised by his loving and caring mother, aunts and uncles. He is survived by his wife, Chris (Christine), his children, Ronald J. Portz Jr., Marie and Thomas Madden, Brenda and Michael Clark, Sr., Michael and Barbara Portz, Michelle and Jason Sanders, James and Kathy Jensen and Jennifer and David Perna; brother, Robert Portz; sister, Eloise Toth; 16 grandchildren, 2 great-grandchildren and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins.
He graduated from Perth Amboy High School in 1956 and in September of that year, enlisted in United States Navy wherein he received training in landbased electronic systems. He was honorably discharged in December of 1959 as a Second Class Petty Officer. Following the Navy enlistment, he received further training in radio and television and accepted a job as an associate engineer with EAI (Electronics Associates, Inc.) wherein he worked on computers for controlling space travel of astronauts for both the Mercury and Gemini Flights. With the advent of 3 Mile Island melt-down, EAI developed and produced simulators for nuclear powerplants and he was the engineer in charge of controlling five nuclear powerplant instruction stations with his equipment.
Following EAI employment he went to work at AT&T in 1979 for 20 years improving AT&T products. Then came employment at Comverse working on improving large phone systems for worldwide use. He retired in 2008.
In 1994 he became a born again Christian and accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. He devoted most of his retirement time in service to others. He was a member of Bayside Chapel in Barnegat serving in the ministry to church groups and the local community. At Bayside Chapel, he was involved during the construction of the Bayside’s West Wing and ministry in the Youth Group, Prayer Group, Vacation Bible School, Wonderfully Made Group for Special Needs people, parking lot attendant, many Adult Bible Classes and annual packaging and delivery of Thanksgiving Day meals for local families in need.
He ran in and finished nine marathons, including New York City and the United States Marine Corps. He was a soccer referee in Burlington, Ocean and Monmouth Counties for 20 years. He moved to Heritage Point in Barnegat in 2008. He was an active EMT member of the Barnegat First Aid Squad from 2008 until 2017. He was an active member of the Coast Guard Auxiliary for five years and volunteered at Keswick, a Christian drug rehabilitation facility, for three years.
In lieu of flowers, he would like your free will offering to be made to Bayside Chapel in Barnegat and/or Franklin Graham’s Samaritan’s Purse.
A gathering of family and friends will be held at 1pm on Saturday, November 18, 2017 at the Bayside Chapel, 965 West Bay Avenue, Barnegat NJ 08005. For condolences, please visit www.fiorefuneralhomes.com.