Sayreville board holds moment of silence for three former employees

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SAYREVILLE – The Sayreville School District held remembrances for three former staff members who have passed away.

The Board of Education’s June 11 meeting began with a tribute to Barbara Arkis, who died on May 31, and Rainero Travisano, who died on June 8.

The board’s June 25 meeting also began with a tribute to Barbara Groncki, who died on June 19.

Arkis, 87, was born in Newark and resided in Sayreville for 42 years before moving to Cheesequake Village in 2003, according to her obituary. In addition to her work in the district, she was a communicant of St. Bernadette’s Church in the borough.

“She worked as substitute in our business office and in various other capacities throughout the district for almost 20 years,” board President Kevin Ciak said.

Travisano, 82, was born in Newark and lived his entire life in Sayreville. According to his obituary, he attended Monmouth University as an undergraduate and earned his graduate degree from Kean University. He was a science teacher and guidance counselor in the district.

“Beyond his work with the Sayreville Public Schools, when you think about a public servant, when you think about a community servant, Renny Travisano comes to mind,” Ciak said. “He was a Middlesex County clerk, he was a borough councilman, fireman in the Morgan section of Sayreville, member of the Elks [Club], member of the Knights of Columbus, and truly a dedicated community leader.”

Travisano also served in the United States Army during the Korean War and in addition to the Sayreville School District, was employed by E.I. DuPont.

His tenure as a volunteer firefighter spanned 54 years and he also served as an usher and member of St. Mary’s Church for more than 60 years.

He was inducted into the Sayreville War Memorial High School Hall of Fame, was the former director of the Sayreville Brain Injured Children, and was the director and founding member of Firefighters Helping Firefighters, according to his obituary.

Groncki, 80, was born in Pennsylvania and resided in New Jersey for most of her life, according to her obituary. A devout Catholic, she served her parish of St. Stanislaus Kostka as the president of the Alter Rosary Society.

Groncki taught at Sayreville War Memorial High School before her retirement 20 years ago and was a member of the retired educators association.

“Mrs. Barbara Groncki dedicated her career to Sayreville students,” Ciak said. “She was a business teacher here. She taught typing, she taught shorthand, she taught many of our different business courses throughout the years here at Sayreville.”

After Ciak concluded his comments at both meetings, a moment of silence was held for the former staff members.