Michael Joseph Kitson, December 19, 1930 – May 15, 2023
Michael Joseph Kitson died suddenly on Monday, May 15 after a life well-lived and well-loved.
Mike was first generation American, the fifth child and second son of Michael and Nancy Kitson, who
emigrated from Ennis, Country Clare, Ireland in 1912 with $25 to their names and a belief that their new
country offered the best home and hope for them and their future family.
He had a typical boyhood in Jersey City, filled with adventures big and small. He would talk about a Cub
Scout meeting that was interrupted by news of the attack on Pearl Harbor and told family and friends of
how when he worked at the Statue of Liberty selling hot dogs, he and a friend would hide till the last
ferry left, then climb to the Statue’s torch, sleeping high above New York Harbor.
After graduating from Snyder High School, he served in the U.S. Army with the U.S. occupation force in
Austria, stationed in Salzburg, his first foray but certainly not his last overseas. After being discharged,
he returned home to a job at New York Telephone where he worked for the next four decades. At that
time, he also met, wooed and eventually married the love of his life, Dorothy “Dot” Fantone. Married in
1954, they spent the next 56 years together until her death in 2010. In 1955, Mike and Dot moved to a
newly built home on Dogwood Lane in Colonia where he lived the rest of his life.
While with New York Telephone, Mike worked often with the New York Police Department on
investigating crimes, playing a key role in the 1964 arrest of scam artists who claimed they had the “Star
of India” star sapphire stolen from American Museum of Natural History.
He and Dot doted on their many nieces and nephews, then their great nieces and great nephews. On
Dogwood Lane, they did the same for the three sons of their great neighbors and friends of 47 years,
Lou and Jeanine Grasso.
Mike was a communicant at St. Cecilia Roman Catholic Church in Iselin, taking daily mass at 7:00 a.m. He
contributed his time and services to the parish’s St. Vincent de Paul Society, the Knights of Columbus as
well as the St. Cecilia’s Food Pantry and the PSOTW, Problem Solvers of the World, working with the
parish priests. He also gave generously to the St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital even driving from
Colonia to Memphis with his great friend Ron Stamboly.
In his life, Mike’s genuine kindness and sweetness will be most remembered by those who loved him. He
was always grateful when that kindness and sweetness was returned, ending his phone calls with a big
“thank you” and a hearty, “I really appreciate it.”
He will be missed by his nephews, Robert and Brian Windrem, Charles Hull Jr., Kenneth and Alfred
Fantone and nieces Eileen Hahn, Nancy Cueman, Lynn Herniesen and Alison Gill as well as his sister-in-
law Gail Fantone, many great nephews and nieces and cousins in Ireland.
Visitation Sunday May 21, 2023 from 3:00pm to 7:00 pm at the Gosselin Funeral Home 660 New Dover
Road, Edison with a funeral mass to be celebrated at St. Cecilia’s, 45 Wilus Way Iselin, Monday, May 22,
at 10:15 a.m.
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