Bernard Knox Elsinger

bernard elsinger

November 23, 1938 ~ June 6, 2020

Bernard Knox Elsinger of Leonia, NJ passed away peacefully at the Christian Health Care Center in Wyckoff, NJ on Saturday, June 6th. Bernie was born on Nov. 23rd, 1938 at Margaret Hague Hospital in Jersey City, NJ to Bernard and Margaret (Phelan) Elsinger. At the age of three, he moved with his parents to Leonia, NJ where he resided for the rest of his life.

Bernie served as an altar boy at St. John the Evangelist Roman Catholic Church in Leonia, attended St. John’s elementary school. St. Cecilia High School in Englewood, NJ and Villanova University in Villanova, PA. He received an Honorable Discharge from the Army in 1966.

In 1968, Bernie married Ruth Flikkema, a Reformed minister’s daughter. Theirs was the first marriage in the Newark Diocese in which a Catholic priest presided over a wedding in a Protestant church. They made history! In 1970, Garrett Scott Elsinger was born.

Bernie started his business career at Dunn and Bradstreet in NYC: however, his love of sports became more important that commuting so he took a job in sales for Quaker State. He also bought a club, The Persian Lamb, in Saddle Brook, NJ and finally ended up with All American Sports.

For over fifty-five years, Bernie was an esteemed sports official for Bergen County schools. Bernie was a mentor to many young officials as they started out and after. HE was also an assigner of referees for baseball, soccer, and basketball, as well as junior football. Recently, he received his certification to be a timer for football. Bernie was a member of BCSOA, BCUA, and IABBO and received awards and recognition throughout the years.

Bernie was a kind, thoughtful, caring man and was liked by all for his engaging ways. His knowledge of sports and intelligence of the game was legendary.

Bernie is predeceased by his parents, Bernard and Margaret, his sister Carolyn and brother Drew. He is survived by his wife Ruth, son Garrett (Gary) and his wife Sabrina, and his two grandsons Garrett and Ethan. He is also survived by a sister Marjorie Smith and her children Sloan, Todd (Adriana) and Brett, as well as several cousins and their families.

A Memorial Service is being planned for a later date when all can gather and tell Bernie stories. In the meantime, his cremains will be laid to rest at Madonna cemetery in Fort Lee, NJ where there will be a small, private ceremony. Funeral arrangements are being coordinated by Patti & Mikatarian Funeral Home in Fort Lee, NJ. The family is requesting that memorial donations in Bernard’s name be sent to The Christian Health Care Center Foundation, 301 Sicomac Ave, Wyckoff, NJ 07481. For info call 201-944-0100 or

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