Gary William Jankowski

Gary William Jankowski

Gary Jankowski was born to William Stanley and Grace Eveyln on February 11, 1940 in Burlington City, New Jersey. He was an educator for the ages, moving to Willingboro. He earned a position as a Driver’s Ed teacher but really found his calling in coaching. He was a football and track coach for many years. His track team was more like a family, especially when they gathered at his home twice a year for team picnics. He’d finish off his career as the Athletic Director for 10 years. Though he did a little security work at the Surf City Hotel in his retirement.
Renowned for his smooth moves on the dance floor his whole life through, especially at the Club with Jo Ann.  Gary was an amazing card player that always got the jokers and he loved to fish especially with his son-in-laws and friends.
He was well known for his practical jokes, always keeping those around him laughing. Yet, his humor was only surpassed by his love for his family. Nothing brought him greater joy than spending time with family and friends, except possibly Roe’s cooking.
In 1964 Gary spied a pretty girl from across the room. He made his way over to meet Rosemarie “Roe” Porcelli and deliver a few confident lines. They’d share a 59-year marriage blessed by many laughs, perfectly complementary personalities and two great daughters, Michele Clifford (Ryan) and Jo Ann Brandt (Chuck) He is survived by his sister, Janet West and many nieces and nephews.  He’s also survived by his JFK family: he loved the students as if they were his own.
Come celebrate 84 great years Tuesday 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. at Sweeney Funeral Home, 478 Cooper Street, Beverly NJ 08010, where there will be an 11:30 storytime service.  In lieu of flowers donations to Stafford Cafe at Meals on Wheels of Ocean County ( will be appreciated.


  1. Cathy Mullen Rhymer says:

    I had him for drivers Ed. He was a good teacher and I recall he was a good coach.

  2. Sherri Zeliff says:

    He was a great Driver’s Ed Teacher and very patient behind the wheel. I had no problem with the classroom and written exam, but was nervous behind the wheel. I.will never forget him and his jokes and patience.

  3. Carole Vernon says:

    Always loved our family Holiday Gatherings together and singing The Oldies in your Music Room. Great friendships will always cherish for many years. Peace and love, The Vernon Families

  4. David Balliet says:

    He was my track coach back in 76-77 at JFK High. I was a Pole Vaulter. Mr Jankowsky was very nice and friendly. He was a great coach. Remember him very well and can still hear his voice.
    He also had the whole track team at his house for a party. Great memories!

    • Michele Clifford says:

      Thank you for your for your memories of dad. He loved the track team.

    • Roe Jankowski says:

      Hi Dave thank you for remembering the coach. He loved the track team and spoke about you to the end

  5. Michael Makinson says:

    Teacher, coach, mentor, role model and friend. Gary Jankowski was all of those things and more. Few people in my life had as much of an impact on the person I am today. For his guidance and example I will be forever grateful.

  6. Sylvia Mashaw (1973 Kennedy High) says:

    I have High Praise for a man who gave his all to his Family, Friends and Student throughout the years. Rest in Eternal Peace Mr. Jankowski with the Good Lord.

  7. Donald Graham says:

    What a great coach and driver’s ed teacher to those of us that went to JFK High School.
    Knowing him after graduation showed what a great man is was.

    • michele Clifford says:

      You are family!!!! We loved your whole family. I loved the parties that we had.

  8. RON STEWART says:

    Great teacher and coach, R.I.P. Gary!

  9. desiree schlitz-velez says:

    Gary and Roe where great people. My mom was good friends with them and they always opened up there house to all. I’m so sorry to hear of Gary’s passing. Roe know that I will be praying for you during this difficult time. God speed.

  10. Fran Crawford says:

    A true JFK legend! He inspired so many students!! Deepest thoughts and prayers to the family!! Until we meet again!! God Bless🙏

  11. Ruth Giberson says:

    Many good meories from high school and Gus’s Pizza. Our love for LBI was another good memory. Sending my deepest sumpathy Roe and Family. Kay Bakely Giberson Class of 1957 BCHS.

  12. Pat and Bill Cornell says:

    JoAnn and Chuck, our deepest sympathy. Pat and Bill Cornell

  13. Christine Giglio Nanni says:

    Roe, I am so sorry for your loss. My condolences to you and your family

  14. Steven Bernstein says:

    Coach Jankowski was always a gentelman !
    He was a great role model for all of us !
    We were lucky to have had him at Kennedy High School !