Richard G. "Rich" Eckelson

Richard G. Eckelson, 64, of Howell passed away unexpectedly on Saturday, August 28, 2021 at Riverview Medical Center, Red Bank.  Rich was born and raised in South Amboy and had lived in Old Bridge before settling here in 1988.  He received his Bachelor’s degree in criminal justice from Trenton State College in 1981.  Rich retired in 2017 with over 30 years of dedicated service for the State of New Jersey Division of Youth and Family Services.  He believed in volunteerism and was a coach of the Pinelander’s Soccer Association and P.A.L in Howell.  Rich cherished his trips to Atlantic City and scratch off tickets.  Every morning he could be found getting his Dunkin iced coffee, or on a Friday in the summer on the Norwood Avenue beach in Avon.  Rich found no greater accomplishment than being a Pop-Pop, his grandsons were his world. 

Rich was predeceased by his mother, Patricia Eckelson and his faithful canine companion, Cody.  He is survived by his wife of 39 years, Karen; three children, Richard “Richie” Eckelson, Jr. of Manahawkin, Caitlin Selden and her husband, David of Lanoka Harbor and Christopher Eckelson of Howell; two grandsons, Lucas and Nathan; his father, George Eckelson of Howell; and his brother, John J. Eckelson and his wife, Linda of West Palm Beach, Florida.

Visitation will be held at the Clayton & McGirr Funeral Home, 100 Elton-Adelphia Road (Route 524), Freehold Township on Wednesday, September 1, 2021 from 3:00 to 6:30 PM with his funeral service to follow. For those that cannot attend in person, the family invites you to participate via Webcast HERE. Interment is private.  For those who desire, contributions in memory of Rich may be made to Autism Speaks, 1 East 33rd Street, 4th Floor, New York, NY 10016.  For information, directions or condolence messages to the family, visit