Benedict “Benny” M. Arnella, 83, of Colts Neck, passed away on Sunday, August 13. Born in Brooklyn, New York, Benny was raised as a farmer’s son in Hazlet by his parents Bernard Arnella and Mary (Donnarumma) Arnella. He graduated from Keyport High School.
Benny met his wife, Mary Greco, at the Hazlet Fireman’s Fair. They married in 1959 and had three children. They lived in Hazlet until 1968 when they moved to Colts Neck.
Benny was many things to many people. He was a quality manager for Kerr Glass. He was a proud fireman as chief of Hazlet Fire Company #1 and Colts Neck Fire Company #2. He was always in his garden and greenhouse providing produce for the neighborhood. He was Santa Claus for The Home Away From Home Academy. He was the character, Ernie, driving the tractor on the farm owned by the Mucci’s. He was a detailed furniture restorer. He was the groundskeeper for Christian Brothers Academy. He served his country honorably in the US Army in Germany. Benny was a lover of all animals. But most of all Benny was the “Salt of the Earth” – put here to do God’s will, love his family, love the earth, share his experiences in his professor voice. We will miss our walking encyclopedia. He always said, “I want to leave my mark,” and he did leave it on this earth and our hearts.
Benny was predeceased by his brother, Philip. He is survived by Mary, his wife of 58 years; his brother, Bernard; his life-long friend, Billy Weigand; his daughter, Mary and Tony Castaldo; his daughter, Frances and Bob McCloskey; his son, Benedict and Carrie Arnella Jr.; and his six grandchildren, Anthony, Nicholas, Christian, Maximiliano, Olivia and Lola.
Holmdel Funeral Home was in charge of arrangements. Memorial donations may be made in his memory to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. To post an online condolence, please visit www.holmdelfuneralhome.com.
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