James Joseph Foley Jr., 71, of New Milford, died Dec. 31 at his residence, with his family at his side. He was the husband of Madeline Foley.
He was born March 29, 1941, in the Bronx, N.Y., the son of the late James J. Foley Sr. and Margaret M. O'Brien.
Mr. Foley was a decorated veteran of the United States Marine Corps and served honorably for six years. His awards include the Navy and Marine Corps Medal for Heroism, the Navy Achievement Medal, the Marine Corps Good Conduct Medal, the National Defense Service Medal and other awards.
After his discharge from the Marine Corps, he was employed by the New Jersey Hudson Railroad until he left to work as a Danbury police officer in 1970. He was elected president of the Police Union in 1973 and served four years as its leader, and retired after serving as a senior detective.
Mr. Foley was a life member of the Second Marine Division Association and the Marine Corps Association, the U.S. Navy Memorial Foundation, the Naval Institute, the American Legion, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Knights of Columbus, the National Rifle Association and the Ousitonic Fish and Wildlife Protective Association.
Mr. Foley enjoyed hunting, fishing, shooting, and all outdoor activities. He was a Civil War historian and avid reader of world histories, as he had an extensive library. His favorite documents were the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States.
He was a friend of Bill W. for 39 years.
Mr. Foley was known for instilling a sense of honesty and integrity in his children, for not being a man of few words and for being loyal to his beliefs.
In addition to his wife of 52 years, Mr. Foley is survived by four children, Catherine Saenz, and her husband, Jim, of Crownsville, Md.; James Foley, and his wife, Linda, of Port Jervis, N.Y.; Patricia McFarlin, and her husband, Stephen, of Brookfield; and Jeannine Hayden, and her husband, Geoff , of New Milford; four siblings, Mary B. Welch, Ann Marie McShea, Jane Ellen Ascone and Margaret M. Pagano; 12 grandchildren, James, John, Jeffrey, Jamie, and Joseph Foley; Brendan and Cassidy Dickinson; Taylor and Emily Hayden; Victor Massey; Mikhaela and Victoria McFarlin; and many nieces, nephews and friends.
Friends may call today (Friday) from 2 to 4 p.m. and from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Lillis Funeral Home, 58 Bridge St., New Milford.
A Mass of Christian Burial will take place Saturday at 11:30 a.m. at St. Joseph's Church at the corner of Routes 133 and 25 in Brookfield. Burial will follow at St. Peter's Cemetery on Lake Avenue Extension in Danbury.
In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Wounded Warrior Project by visiting www.woundedwarriorproject.org.