SAYREVILLE – The Sayreville School District Board of Education’s reorganization meeting began on a somber note with the news of the death of a district staff member who died on Christmas Eve.
Jacob Finkelstein, a speech and language therapist at the Emma L. Arleth Elementary School in Sayreville, died on Dec. 24, 2017, at age 53. According to his obituary, Finkelstein was a resident of Matawan at the time of his death.
Superintendent of Schools Richard Labbe informed the public of Finkelstein’s death at the start of the board meeting on Jan. 3. According to Labbe, Finkelstein had been a member of the district for more than nine years.
“Unfortunately, over the winter vacation, we lost another staff member,” said Labbe, in reference to the recent death of district administrator Thomas Gentile. “Jacob Finkelstein passed away. He was a speech and language therapist in the Sayreville Public Schools for over nine years. He was a quiet, gentle, but very adventurous person, one person [who] I had the opportunity and privilege to get to know while I’ve been here in Sayreville.
“[Finkelstein] was just a remarkable person and an exceptional speech and language therapist. He worked with so many of our students with disabilities and many of them have him to thank for that gift of communication that they received through his great work.
“He’s survived by his daughter, who he loved dearly, as well as his sister, who was his rock in the time of need,” the superintendent said.
After Labbe spoke about Finkelstein, a moment of silence was held in his memory.