On Tuesday, September 18, 2018, Mel passed away in Voorhees, N.J., after battling brain cancer. He was 89 years old.
He is survived by his wife Reggi to whom he was a loving and devoted husband for more than 61 years of marriage. He was father to Russ Bleemer and Judy (Bleemer) Baker and his proudest achievement in life was being grandfather to Ryan and Justin Baker. He was father in law to Nancy Rine and Dr. Don Baker and he loved them like his own.
Mel was born in Newark, N.J. where he graduated from West Side High School and then from Rutgers University --Newark.
He met Reggi at Tamiment, a Poconos resort, and they were married in 1956. They lived in North Bergen before settling in Cranford, N.J. in 1962. Last year, they moved to Lions Gate in Voorhees.
Mel passed the certified public accounting exam the week Judy was born. He retired from CPA practice at New Brunswick’s Withum, Smith and Brown, but continued to consult with his firm colleagues and clients until age 87, and continued to work with his own clients until his illness last year. Prior to Withum he worked at M.D. Oppenheim & Co. in Piscataway, and Zisman, Traurig & Elblonk in Springfield.
Mel was active in the N.J. Society of CPAs, and a member of Cranford’s Temple Beth-El Mekor Chayim and a former Men’s Club officer, where he also was a member of the club’s bowling league for about 45 years. He was a member of the Rutgers Club and served as treasurer in 1980s. He was treasurer of Boy Scout Troop 80 in Cranford, where Russ and Don were scouts.
Mel was an avid jazz and swing music buff, loved travel and spending time doing anything and everything possible with his grandsons, all while telling great stories and entertaining everyone in his presence.
The entertainment carries on. In recent years, he recorded jokes on video for broadcast on Jewish Humor Central, a comedy website. You can find Mel’s material here.