History & Staff
We have years of experience caring for families, from all walks of life. Each family comes to us because they know we are leaders in our profession, dedicated to excellence in service, and have the highest integrity.
Mr. & Mrs. Waitt purchased an old estate home property and spent about a year converting the historic (over 100 year old) residence into a funeral home. "The homelike atmosphere was kept so our families would be comfortable." The grand opening was held in June of 1965.
When the funeral home opened, Marlboro Township had a population of about 4000 people. Over the years, the funeral home has grown to accommodate the ever growing population of Marlboro Township and the surrounding communities of Matawan, Aberdeen, Keyport, and Holmdel. In the 1980’s an addition was built on the building to enhance the chapel size and areas for families and their visitors. In 2000, future funeral director and owner, David Hernandez began working as an apprentice and in 2001 Michael V. Grandi started as a funeral director and quickly became the manager of Waitt Funeral Home. Again there was a need to enhance and renovate the building and throughout 2002 and 2003 an extensive restoration was completed. The renovation included repairs to the 100 year old building, new roofs, bathrooms, arrangement room, and lobbies much of how the building looks today.
As word of our service and beautiful facilities spread, families began to use our funeral home from neighboring towns. The need arose for a new location in the town of Old Bridge in Middlesex County. In May 2007 the doors of Old Bridge Funeral Home opened to the community. Old Bridge Funeral Home was built on the solid reputation of families first and has grown to become the premier funeral home for families in Old Bridge and surrounding areas such as East Brunswick, Spotswood, and South River.
In October of 2012, Grace Tabernacle was purchased by David Hernandez and his family to convert the church into a state of the art funeral home. Two weeks later Hurricane Sandy devastated the area with a direct hit on Lake Como and the towns along the Jersey Shore. It was after seeing the devastation to our town that a new purpose and design was applied to the construction of the funeral home. Changes were made to create an atmosphere that captures the beauty of the surrounding "shore" area and natural light with each sunrise over the ocean. Construction began once again on the Grace Tabernacle building, converting the building into the future Oceanside Memorial Home.
In October of 2013, construction completed and the doors opened to families in need. Oceanside Memorial Home opened to immediately begin receiving the trust of families in need. Oceanside Memorial boasts a 250 seated chapel, family centers, elevator, and is one of the most state of the art facilities in the area.
David Hernandez, his wife Stacey, and family are committed to provide dignified and meaningful services to honor the memory of loved ones.
“We treat each family as if they were our own, tailoring special services designed as unique as the life lived.”
A Note from David and Michael....
We realize that you have a wide selection of funeral homes in this area to choose from, all offering caring compassionate services. At Waitt & Old Bridge Funeral Homes we do more and have been doing it for almost 50 years. Everyone is special, and every funeral is special. We make it personal. Most funeral homes in our area are family owned, but, do you meet with the directors who live, work and worship in your hometown? We take great pride in our social responsibility and volunteer in numerous organizations in town. Our locations are new, accommodating, convenient, our prices are fair, and we are 100 % honest, We are professional, we do not cut corners, our motto is “to treat all families as we would our own.” For the thousands of families who have put their trust in us, we thank you, and for families looking for professional, honest and caring services, we strive to earn your trust.
David Lee Hernandez, Jr. & Michael V. Grandi
David Lee Hernandez Jr., Founder, Principal
David, known to many as “David Lee” began his career in funeral service at the age of 12, traveling to work with his mother in a cemetery to chase geese off of the grounds. A Native of Northeast Philadelphia, after graduating from Calvary Christian Academy in Philadelphia, he moved to Morganville, where he to work at the funeral home and started his internship in 2001. David continued his studies where he earned an Associates of Science Degree and a Certificate of Proficiency in Funeral Services. He became a licensed funeral director in May of 2004, and later continued his education in Legal Studies at St. John’s University, New York.
David is active in each community the funeral homes serve; he is Charter Past President of the Kiwanis Club of Manalapan, and Old Bridge Kiwanis Club, member of the Friendly Sons of the Shillelagh in Belmar, member of the Old Bridge- Sayreville- South Amboy Chamber of Commerce, Matawan Aberdeen Chamber and Pennsauken-Merchantville Area Chamber, where he sits on a number of committees. He was recently elected to the board of the Raritan Bay Medical Center Foundation in Old Bridge and Perth Amboy and is a business leader in the Old Bridge Business Alliance. He has served as on officer in Middlesex Sommerset Funeral Directors Association and is also a member of NJ State Funeral Directors Association, and National Funeral Directors Association. His firms are seven time NFDA Pursuit of Excellence Winners, and he recently was named by the Kiwanis Club as Business Leader of the Year in 2015.
He and his family attends Calvary Chapel Old Bridge and volunteers in various ministry opportunities. In addition to being a licensed funeral Director in New Jersey he also holds funeral director and embalmers licenses in Pennsylvania and Connecticut as well as a New Jersey Life Insurance Producers License. He is also a Notary, a service provided free to the community.David enjoys spending time with his wife, Stacey, daughter Sophia, and son David Lee III. He also enjoys snowboarding and golf.
David and his family strive to meet each family's needs with personalized and detailed services. His desire to help each family has led him to his motto of, "Each life has a story, and that story deserves to be told through meaningful tributes and celebrations of life."
Michael Vito Grandi, General Manager
Michael V. Grandi began his career in funeral service in 1998. He is a 2000 graduate of the Funeral Service program at Mercer County Community College and became a Licensed Funeral Director in November of 2000. His skills in embalming as well as his care and compassion for people elevated him to a Management position with Waitt Funeral Home in August of 2001. Michael also holds a New Jersey Life Insurance License, giving his firm the opportunity to offer alternative funding options to consumers who wish to prepay their funerals. Michael is a 6 time recipient of the Pursuit of Excellence award, the highest honor received in the industry for excellence in funeral service putting his firm in the top 2 percent of funeral homes nationwide.
He is a member of both the National Funeral Directors Association and the New Jersey State Funeral Directors Association. His community involvement is wide spread and he is a charter member and has served 3 years as the President of the Kiwanis Club of Marlboro, 2 years as its secretary and now is the current Treasurer. Michael has remained a 12 year member of the Matawan Aberdeen Chamber of Commerce and in 2011 has served as a member of the board. He is a member of the Matawan Italian American Association and supports its charitable endeavors. He sits on the Supervisory Commitee for Entertainment Industries Federal Credit Union. In 2013 he became a proud member of the Knights of Columbus Bishop John C. Reiss Council #15964 and earned his 4th Degree November 2, 2014. In his spare time he enjoys boating and playing golf. Michael is an avid toy train collector, his collection has been featured numerous times in various publications and well as a content contributor to magazines.
Joseph C. DePasquale, Advance Planning Director
Joseph C. DePasquale was born and raised in Jersey City, NJ. And has been a resident of Manalapan for the last 25 years. Joe and his wife Keri, have three children David, Nicole, and Emily.
Joey became a Licensed Funeral Director after selling his own business and following his life long dream of becoming a Funeral Director. Joe feels the most important aspect of his career is being there for those families who need him during their time of grief.
Being a Funeral Director has been the most rewarding for him, not only spiritually, but knowing that when a family looses a loved one, he can be there to help and guide them through one of the most difficult times of their lives. Joe believes if he can make that transition just a little bit easier, his calling in life has been answered.
When Joey is not serving families, you can find him on his farm raising his award winning goats.
Stacey Hernandez, Special Events Coordinator
Stacey Hernandez, joins our team as our special events coordinator. She is responsible for the many community events that are held within each of our home's local areas. She works diligently to create and implement programs that are dedicated to the memory of loved ones and for the families they leave behind. She was instrumental in creating one of our most cherished events, the Holiday Ornament Program, which is held every year.
Stacey also works as a licensed Radiologic Technologist in the Meridian Health System. A graduate of Marlboro High School in 2000, she later received her degree with honors in Health Sciences.
Stacey is a member of the Manalapan Kiwanis Club and attends Calvary Chapel Old Bridge.
She enjoys cooking, traveling and spending time with her family and children Sophia Gabrielle and David Lee III. Stacey is not licensed or able to make arrangements, embalm or direct funerals.
Ronald T. Principe Jr., Funeral Director
Ronald grew up in Holmdel New Jersey, graduating from Holmdel High School in 2001. He went to DeVry University where he studied both computer programming and computer networking. Ron started his career in funeral service in 2003 as a part time employee at Waitt Funeral Home, after working for about a year, Ron realized that he wanted to become a funeral director to help the families we serve through one of the toughest events in their lives. He completed all of his prerequisite classes at Brookdale Community College and while continuing his education in Mortuary Science at Mercer County College he became the Treasurer of his Mortuary class and graduated in 2008.
Ron received his New Jersey Funeral Directors license in 2009 and a limited Pennsylvania Funeral Directors license in 2010. He is a member of both the National Funeral Directors Association and the New Jersey State Funeral Directors Association. Ron is also a Notary, a service provided free to the community. He has been a volunteer for Kids Against Cancer since 1997 when his father took him for the first time. Ron participates in their annual Christmas toy drive and with the help of the New York Transit Authority and Santa, toys are given to children at Staten Island Hospital that are not able to go home for the holidays. Ron has recently joined Kids For A Cure an organization in New Jersey with the same goals and aspirations as Kids Against Cancer. Ron enjoys spending time with his wife Tessa and their families. Ron, a former Pokemon Champion donates his time to train future Pokemon Tournament Players..
Antonio Ali Bocas, Facilities Manager
Antonio is a native of Philadelphia before he recently moved to our area. He is a graduate of Philadelphia Christian Academy and worked in general contracting for 15 years before joining the funeral homes. He assist in the many building projects in throughout the funeral homes as well as offering support to families during their services.
Antonio enjoys spending time with his family watching college football, especially his favorite team the Rutgers Knights. During the off season, he spends his time creating Japanese Animation short movies that are broadcast on his youtube channel.
Matthew V. Marini, Funeral Director
Matthew is a licensed funeral director who has been with The Jersey Memorial Group since 2015. Prior to working in funeral service, Matthew spent nine years as a private baseball instructor, and received degrees in Psychology and Criminal Justice from Mercer County Community College. He went on to attend the Funeral Service and Mortuary Science program at Mercer County Community College, where he served as his Class President. Matthew was the recipient of the J.M. Nolte National Scholar Award for his academic excellence and community involvement while attending the Mortuary Science program. Matthew received his Degree in Mortuary Science in 2014 and has been licensed since 2015.
Matthew enjoys dining out and carrying on his family's carnival ride business. He holds patents on many summer carnival rides including the Southern Belle and Bearded Dogg.