Joseph Leifken


3:00 pm - 7:00 pm
Monday, May 14, 2018
Norman Dean Home for Services, Inc.
16 Righter Avenue
Denville, New Jersey, United States


10:00 am - 11:00 am
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
St. Mary's Church
15 Myers Avenue
Denville, New Jersey, United States

Final Resting Place

11:30 am - 12:00 pm
Tuesday, May 15, 2018
Gate Of Heaven Cemetery
225 Ridgedale Avenue
East Hanover, New Jersey, United States

Obituary of Joseph Leifken


    “I stand at your gate and the song that I sing is of moonlight…”


Joseph J. Leifken, passed away peacefully at home on Tuesday, May 8, 2018.  He shared 92 years of love and wagon wisdom with his family and friends.  A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated on Tuesday, May 15th at 10:00 am at St. Mary’s Church, Denville.  Entombment to follow at Gate of Heaven Mausoleum, East Hanover.  Visitation will be held on Monday, May 14th from 3-7 m at the Norman Dean Home For Services, 16 Righter Avenue, Denville.  Donations in Joe’s name may be made to the good work of Compassionate Care Hospice or 11th Hour Rescue by way of

Joe was born in Essen,Germany to the late Joseph and Maria .  As a young child, he immigrated to the US with his parents and brother and the family settled in East Orange where he attended school.  After his schooling, he joined the US Merchant Marines, proudly serving our country during WWII.  Soon after, Joe married his first wife Joan Molkenthin and they had six children.  While the kids were small, Joan fell ill and passed in 1967.  A couple of years later; Joseph and the kids were blessed to meet Margaret “Margie” Crowell and her four children.  The couple fell in love and joined their families, making their home in Boonton Township.  More love, more joys, more blessings. 

Joe worked hard to provide a beautiful life for his family.  He was the founder & owner of Denville Bear & Body for over 50 years before taking small steps away from the business.  He continued to find automobiles at auction for friends and neighbors and do anything he could to help out anyone in need.  Joe was an extraordinary husband & partner, father, grandpa and friend.  Most recently he was crowned the title of Great Grandpa to 4 little ones.  He loved when the grandkids were near and was so proud of every single one.  He bragged of their accomplishments to anyone who would listen.  He also enjoyed spending time with Petey, the family feline.  

Joe loved to sing and did this professionally for some time.  He had a million dollar smile and always had a way of making everyone feel special. He was a true gentleman and a one of a kind in this world.  He enjoyed traveling with Margie and taking part in the activities with the Seniors.   Joe loved going to dinner.  A good meal was certainly on his top ten list. Above everything, being with loved ones was the best.  And although his passing has left us broken hearted, we take comfort in knowing he is at peace and is watching over his family with love and pride. 

He leaves a lifetime of joyous memories to his loving wife Margaret "Margie" of 50 years; his dear children Patricia Ceballos (Marcel), Mary Meloche (Thomas), Gregory (Denise), Joseph Jr. (Lisa), Kurt (Shannon), Cynthia Rec (John), David Crowell (Diane), Thomas Crowell (Kathy) and James Crowell; his adored grandchildren Rutger Ceballos (Elaine), Alison, Luke & Carly Leifken, Alicia Leifken Henke (Gene), Karissa Leifken, Levi Leifken, John Rec (Amanda), Joseph Rec, David Crowell Jr., Donna Crowell Coutinho (Thiago), Thomas Crowell Jr.; and Lindsey, Chelsea & Cody Leifken, Brandon, Michelle & Philip Johnson; his great grandchildren Megan, Kobe, Isabella and John; Petey the cat; and many more relatives, dear friends and acquaintances. He was preceeded in death by his son Leslie (2001) and his brother Herbie Leifken.


        “A life well lived is a legacy of joy and pride and pleasure, a living lasting memory our grateful heart’s will treasure.” 


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