Services were held in Wayne, N.J. last week for Thomas Joseph Clare, president of ShopRite of Oakland and a longtime member of Wakefern Food Corp.’s board of directors, who passed away on July 4 at age 86.
A graduate of St. Mary’s High in Rutherford, N.J., and an Air Force officer during the Korean War, Clare returned to New Jersey in 1953 and worked in his father’s supermarket business with his brothers, Charles and Paul. Following their dad’s retirement, the brothers joined Wakefern Food Corp. and in 1958 renamed their store West End ShopRite.
Thomas Clare took an active role at Wakefern, serving on many of the cooperative’s committees and as a member of the board. In 1972, he opened a second ShopRite in Oakland, N.J. with his brother, Charles. After splitting the businesses, Thomas focused on growing the Oakland store.
Born in Rutherford, N.J., in 1928, Clare was the beloved husband of the late Jeanne Clare for 60 years and is survived by their six children, 17 grandchildren and seven great-grandchildren.
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