Monroe Mayor Gerald Tamburro has died, the township announces this morning.
He was 84.
Tamburro, a Democrat, was elected to fill a Second Ward council seat in 2001 and served eight years as council president before his election as mayor in 2015.
“He was a tireless and passionate advocate for Monroe Township residents and served the township with love and pride,” the township said in a statement on the mayor’s death.
They announced that township flags will be flown at half-staff for seven days “to honor Mayor Tamburro and his decades of service.”
“Mayor Gerald Tamburro was an example of the right person going into public service for the right reasons. Instead of spending his retirement from the private sector in quiet pursuits, Jerry dedicated his last two decades to the people of Monroe, his adopted hometown, which responded by electing him to township council and twice as their mayor,” said Gov. Phil Murphy. “Jerry’s legacy of service will be his tireless work to protect Monroe’s taxpayers and their quality of life, and the pride he took in never having let a developer pull a fast one against the township.”
Middlesex County Democratic Chairman Kevin McCabe said that it was “with deep sadness that I learned of the passing of Mayor Gerald Tamburro this morning.
“Mayor Tamburro was a dedicated family man, consummate professional, and served his community as a distinguished leader. He was also someone I considered a trusted confidant and friend,” McCabe said. “On behalf of the Middlesex County Democratic Organization, I send my sincere condolences to his family, to Monroe Township which he so deeply loved, and his close friends in Greenbriar at Whittingham.”
Tamburro was re-elected in 2019 by 701 votes, 52%-48%, against Republican Charles DiPierro.
He had won 46%-36% in 2015 against Republican Martin Herrmann, with independent Ken Chiarellla winning 18%.
Council President Miriam Cohen will become acting mayor until the Monroe Township Democratic Committee submits three names of interim replacements. That will happen in the next 35 days.
Monroe will have a special election in November 2021 to fill the remaining 26 months of Tamburro’s term.
Tamburro’s wife, Carole, died in 2019.
“More than anything, however, Jerry was a friend to many and a loving family man. He lost his wife of 60 years, Carole, last year and I take some solace in knowing he and Carole are now reunited. He was a good and unwavering personal friend, even in those early days when he didn’t have to be, and his support was always truly meaningful,” the governor said. “Tammy and I send our most heartfelt condolences to his and Carole’s six children and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.”
Tamburro is also survived by his nephew, New Jersey State Police Major Matt Lubertazzi, the head of the Executive Protection Unit that protects the governor.
Funeral arrangements will be handled by the Demarco Funeral Home.
This story was updated at 12:48 PM with comment from McCabe.