Remembering Mary Curtin Creaser

Montclair, NJ – Mary Curtin Creaser, 55, of Montclair, NJ, passed away from colon cancer on Friday, May 20, 2022 at her home. Daughter of Janice (Fox) and Patrick Curtin, Mary was born in Dover, NJ. She grew up in Hackettstown, NJ and later lived in Jersey City, NJ, Norwalk and Stamford, CT, followed by the Gramercy Park neighborhood in Manhattan before settling in Montclair, NJ. She attended Hackettstown High School and graduated from The College of the Holy Cross in Worcester, MA with a Bachelor of Arts in English and experience in Washington, DC serving the Congressional Caucus for Women’s Issues with a focus on women’s and childhood health policy.

Mary’s professional life cast her into Manhattan, where she quickly settled in the global healthcare practice of communications company Fleishman-Hillard (FH). Mary thrived with her FH colleagues with whom she worked with for more than 17 years, rising to Senior Vice President & Partner and managing engagements and award-winning teams across the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries.

An interest in community healthcare led Mary to pursue graduate studies in health policy, nutrition, and nursing. She earned a Master’s Degree in Healthcare Administration from Seton Hall University in South Orange, NJ and was presented with the University’s MHA Servant Leadership Award in recognition of her outstanding achievements in service to others.

With her advanced degree, Mary joined RWJBarnabas Health’s Clara Maass Medical Center in Belleville, NJ where she designed and brought no-cost, Medicare-funded annual wellness visits to seniors in Essex, Bergen, and Hudson Counties, an initiative recognized by the New Jersey Hospital Association with a Community Outreach Award.

Mary’s passion for healthcare and patient advocacy led her to join Novartis Oncology in East Hanover, NJ where, as Global Director of Communications, she worked with scientists, patients, doctors, nurses, and other healthcare experts around the world to advance the understanding of cancer and put a spotlight on the needs of patients and their loved ones. Mary cared deeply for others and how she could play a part in improving the health of people around the world, especially people with cancer. This opportunity introduced her to countless colleagues that she cherished.

Mary’s service to others carried into volunteering in Montclair in substantive ways. As a community member, she served as a merit badge coordinator and fundraising lead with Troop 12 of the Boy Scouts of America; she taught religious education at Immaculate Conception Church; she was a past board member of the Montclair-based music education organization Jazz House Kids; she chaired the Swim Committee, participated on the Membership Committee, and served on the board of Bradford Bath & Tennis Club; and she held numerous volunteer and alliance-building roles in Montclair’s K-12 public school district for more than 15 years – from Parent-Teacher-Administrator team member to School Action Team Chair. She was passionate about launching initiatives that addressed the educational needs of all students, such as “no-cost tutoring” during the school day.

Mary helped raise three happy and healthy children who, in her image, are confident in pursuing their unique passions, advocating for themselves and expressing their love of one another – love that helped a family share in life’s pleasures and endure life’s hardships.

Mary was predeceased by her mother, Janice (2004). She is survived by her husband Tom and three children – James, Caroline and Diana; father Patrick; sister Alison; and three nieces and nephews – Eileen, Anna, and Miles.

Cancer treatment approaches require creative thinking but only move forward if they are funded. Far too many patients are left with few, if any, treatment options. In lieu of flowers, donations in remembrance of Mary can be made to support cancer research at Memorial Sloan Kettering: Giving. mskcc.org.

A wake for Mary will be held on Tuesday, May 31st from 4-8pm at Caggiano Memorial Home, 62 Grove St, Montclair. A funeral mass will occur on Wednesday, June 1st at 10:00am at Immaculate Conception Church, 30 N Fullerton Ave, Montclair, NJ. Interment will follow at Immaculate Conception Cemetery, 712 Grove St, Montclair, NJ.

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