John James “Jack” Gilligan of Nutley, formerly of Montclair, a retired 25-year member of the Montclair police force, died after a lengthy illness on Sept. 27, 2021, at Hackensack University Medical Center. He was 70.

Mr. Gilligan was born during a hurricane in November 1950 to Thomas J. Gilligan Sr. and Mary Agnes (Giblin) Gilligan.  

He proudly served for 25 years in the Montclair Police Department. He would often tell stories from his days on the force that enthralled and amazed family and friends, or made them laugh. He retired from the force in 2000. 

Mr. Gilligan also served in the New Jersey National Guard. 

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In his early years he worked at Frank & Rick’s gas station and Cohen Confectionery, and was a long-haul moving man for United Van Lines, all of Montclair.

After retiring, Mr. Gilligan was a successful day trader.

He enjoyed spending many hours with his neighbors and their dogs. He would play with, dog-sit and train those pets and sneak them treats when he thought no one was looking (but everyone knew he was doing it).

Mr. Gilligan is survived by his wife, Marsha (Rosa), of Nutley; his brothers, Tom (Mary Jane), of Spring Lake, Ed, of Bayonne, and Jim (Ana), of West Milford; extended family, George and Leslie Metzger and Donna Rosa, and many nieces and nephews. In addition, he leaves behind his current canine companion, Thelma. His longtime canine companion Samantha crossed the rainbow bridge a few years ago. 

He was predeceased by parents, his brothers, Mark (surviving spouse, Betty) and Bob (surviving spouse, Ellen), and nephews Sean and Danny. 

Visitation is at the Hugh M. Moriarty Funeral Home, 76 Park St., on Friday, Oct. 1, from 3 to 8 p.m. There will be a Mass of Christian Burial at Church of the Immaculate Conception, Montclair, on Saturday, Oct. 2, at 10:30 a.m., followed by entombment at Glendale Cemetery, Bloomfield.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the Friends of the Montclair Animal Shelter, PO Box 3141, Montclair, NJ 07043. Please indicate on the check “In honor of Jack Gilligan.” Donations can also be made on the organization’s website,; please add under special instructions, “In honor of Jack Gilligan.”