E. John

ERCOLE JOHN DeFRANCISCO JR., known to his brother firefighters simply as John DeFrancisco, was born in 1928 to E. John DeFrancisco Sr. and his wife, the former Sarah Toms. The family, which included older sister Jane, lived at 2924 Constitution Road in Fairview as early as April of 1930 and as late as 1943. It appears that they moved that year to 2861 Idaho Road in Fairview, and they were definitely there by 1947. In the 1940s E, John DeFrancisco Sr. served as a clerk with Camden's Board of Assessors then went on to a successful career in the real estate business in Camden. 

John DeFrancesco Jr. began his service with the Camden Fire Department in December of 1959, coming into the department to replace Captain John Henson, who passed away the previous September. He served with Engine Company 3 in the early 1960s, then was transferred to Rescue Company 1, where he may have served as acting Captain. In the early 1970s he worked at Ladder Company 3 in East Camden. John DeFrancisco was promoted to captain on January 21, 1977.

E. John DeFrancisco moved to Cherry Hill after Camden removed its residency restriction on public employees in the 1970s. He retired from the Camden Fire Department on May 1, 1990 after over 30 years of distinguished service.

E. John DeFrancsico passed away on January 29, 2016. He had retired to New Port Richey, Florida,  then moved to Southampton, New jersey and then returned Cherry Hill. Plagued with ill health in his last years, he was diagniosied with colon cancer on 2012 and suffered a stroke in 2014. He lived out the last year-and-a-half of fhis life in Medford Care Center with his wife Betty. They were a well liked duo there, often found holding hands and kissing. 

E. John DeFrancesco was very active in multiple string bands in both  Florida and New Jersey. He was also known to be quite the gardener, having large gardens where he spent hours learning the best ways to grow the best of vegetables as well as watermelon, strawberries, and and blueberries. He was also a very educated historian regarding the lost towns of the Pine Barrens and could be found fertilizing rare nut trees in the area. He loved Long Beach Island too, and often took his family to the beaches for the day, only to stop for a peanut butter ice cream cone on the way home. 

Camden Courier-Post * November 15, 1969

Rescue Company 1 - Edward V. Michalak - John DeFrancisco - John Mogck
Ernest A. Tartaglia

Camden Courier-Post * January 22, 1977

Camden Courier-Post
March 14, 1984

North 28th Street
E. John DeFrancisco


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Jeffery Jennings - Robert Wojciechowski
James Bates - Bobby Joe Jennings
Ruby Powell - Joseph Bates
Hayes Avenue