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Irwin S. Zonis, 88

Chemical Engineer ...

Jun 22, 1930 — Jan 13, 2019

Irwin S. Zonis, 88, of Skillman, died on January 13.

Beloved husband, father, brother, and grandfather, Irwin was born in Boston, where he attended Boston Latin School, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, and MIT. Irwin and wife Barbara lived for 50 years in West Orange before moving to Skillman.

Educated as a chemical engineer, Irwin worked his way up to CEO and president of both the Essex Chemical Corporation Industrial Chemicals Division and Peridot Chemicals of NJ until his retirement in 1995.

Irwin was actively involved in environmental issues for the state of NJ. He was a member of the NJ Clean Air Council from its inception in 1968, and was instrumental in developing programs to improve the quality of air and water in NJ. Irwin was recognized for his leadership and commitment by the governor of NJ and numerous organizations.

In later years, Irwin got great enjoyment from reading the daily newspaper, especially The New York Times, and listening to the Metropolitan Opera.

He is survived by his wife Barbara of Skillman; brother Marvin Zonis and his wife Lucy Salenger of Chicago; daughter Jocelyn Raquepau and her husband John of Kailua-Kona, HI; daughter Stephanie Zonis of Neshanic Station; daughter Laura Pinto and her husband Chris of Springfield, OR; grandson Cody Pinto of Phoenix, AZ; and granddaughter Kat Pinto of Springfield, OR.

A service will be held for Irwin on Thursday, January 17 at 12 noon in the chapel at the Sharon Memorial Park, Dedham Street, Sharon, MA, 02607; 781-828-7216, followed by interment. Family and friends are then invited to a gathering in honor of Irwin at Cook Restaurants, Needham, located at 109 Chapel St., Needham, MA, 02492; 781-400-5927, following the service.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to MIT (, Rensselaer, or the Boston Latin School.

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