Robert P. Ulesky, 91
September 16, 1931 – February 2, 2023
COOPERSTOWN – Robert P. Ulesky, 91, of Cooperstown, New York passed away peacefully on Tuesday, February 2, surrounded by his loving family.
Bob was born to Peter and Mary (Mae) Ulesky in Newark, New Jersey on September 16, 1931. He grew up in Irvington, New Jersey. He attended St. Leo’s Grammar School. Bob graduated from Seton Hall Prep and entered Immaculate Conception Seminary.
After his ordination, Bob served at Saint Paul of the Cross in Jersey City as a parish priest. He made many lifelong friends while serving the church and the community. In 1968, he left the priesthood. Throughout his life, he spent time as an activist for civil rights, immigration rights and the rights of the less fortunate. While beginning a family, he earned another master’s degree and an EdD in Education. He spent his career as an English teacher at Essex County Community College, where he was one of the founders.
He also pursued his dream to own a farm in Lafayette, New Jersey. He learned just how hard it was to run a farm and enjoyed learning how to ride horses.
In 1992, Bob married Maria Camargo. They lived in Lafayette, Manhattan, Englewood, Tenafly and, finally, Cooperstown. Bob enjoyed his time in Cooperstown, taking care of their property, enjoying the beautiful views, and having family and friends visit. Bob also enjoyed reading and writing poetry during his retirement.
When asked what his greatest accomplishment in life was, he highlighted his sports prowess as a football, baseball and basketball player. His family and friends remember him for his patience, humility and warm soul. His greatest legacy was teaching his two daughters and five grandchildren, through example, to care for others and hug hard! He taught them through his examples and then became their biggest cheerleader as he watched them all grow.
Bob is predeceased by his mom and dad, Peter and Mary (Mae) Ulesky. He is survived by his wife, Maria-Jose Camargo; his daughters, Tara Thomas and Julie Berg and son-in-law Rick Maier; and five grandchildren, Ryan and Tyler Berg, and Jacob, Emma, and Sydney Thomas; sister Claire and brother-in-law Ed Woltersdorf and youngest sister Irene Ulesky; and four nephews and a niece.
The Liturgy of Christian Burial was held at St Mary’s Catholic Church in Cooperstown, New York on Wednesday, February 8. There will be a Memorial of Life held in New Jersey early in the spring. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to Doctors without Borders, Catholic Charities, or Otsego Land Trust, three organizations that meant a great deal to Bob.