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Obituary: Harold Van Alen Wait Jr.

Harold Van Alen Wait Jr.

Harold Van Alen Wait Jr., of Cranford, NJ, and Saltaire NY, died peacefully surrounded by his family at Overlook Hospital, Summit, NJ, on June 18, 2009 following complications from pneumonia. Born in Glen Cove on Jan. 2, 1927, he served in the U.S. Navy as a radar operator from 1944 to 1946 and graduated from Adelphi University in 1949. He worked at Chevron Oil Company in Perth Amboy, NJ, in accounting, personnel and labor relations from 1949 until his retirement.

A resourceful man, Harold always said that building their summer home in Saltaire, a family effort, was his happiest memory. There he enjoyed fishing, crabbing and calming and active participation in the Saltaire Citizens’ Advisory Association.

His keen interest in local and national governments resulted in many letters of concern to newspapers and local officials. As one of the leaders of the Eddymont Civic Association in Cranford, he was able to preserve from development a tract of land ultimately used in Cranford’s flood control program.

Harold was the son of Harold Van Alen and Marion Stringham Wait of Glen Cove. Surviving are his wife of 59 years, Nancy (Braynard); children, Susan, Marjorie, Judy and John; seven grandchildren; and one great-grandson. He is also survived by a sister Elizabeth W. Geidel; a brother Irving Stringham Wait; and by a host of other family members and friends.

A memorial service will take place on June 27 at noon at the Matinecock Friends Meeting, 267 Duck Pond Rd., Locust Valley, following private interment at the Matinecock Burial Ground. In lieu of flowers, Harold’s family suggests a donation to the American Friends Service Committee, 1502 Cherry St., Philadelphia, PA 19102 (

Arrangements were made by the Gray Memorial Funeral Home.