Michael Robert Koch passed away on January 17, 2021 at the age of 68 after a courageous battle with a sudden and unexpected illness. Michael battled every challenge in his life with a confident strength and left this life for the next when the Almighty Father called him to His side.
Michael was born in Jersey City in 1952. He graduated PS 20, St. Anthony’s High School, and St. Peter’s College in Jersey City NJ. Michael went on to receive has PhD in Biochemistry from the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.
Michael began his career at Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons in New York before joining the Hoffman-La Roche Institute of Molecular Biology. He later joined Roche Pharmaceuticals where he spent the remainder of his career which culminated as Director of Licensing and Corporate Development.
Michael resided in Randolph, NJ for 30 years before settling into his retirement at his family home in Toms River, NJ, which he lovingly referred to as the Koch Compound.
Michael had a larger-than-life personality and always enjoyed the company of his friends and family. He enjoyed spending time at the beach or around the swimming pool. He had a love for food, wine, dancing and above all living each day to its fullest. From his days at Hoffman-La Roche he gained a love for traveling the globe with his beloved wife of 29 years, Wanda. When he wasn’t working, he could always be found at the theater, on a cruise, at a Polka retreat or at dinner with friends, with a cocktail in his hand and a big smile on his face. He was a devoted son, husband, father, grandfather, brother and friend.
Michael’s love for life and family was matched only by his deep Catholic faith. He was an active member of Resurrection Parish in Randolph, NJ and later of the Parish of St. Junipero Serra in Seaside Park, NJ where he worked on the parish council serving God and his community.
Michael is predeceased by his parents, Marion (nee Pacewicz) and Michael Joseph, his first wife, Ellen (nee Koles) and his daughter, Elysa Ann. Surviving him are his wife, Wanda (nee Kolodziej), his son, Michael Jon and wife, Lauren (nee Piper), his loving grandchildren, Katie and Michael George and his brother, Timothy and wife, Bernice (nee Garvey).
Michael will be laid to rest at St. Joseph’s Cemetery in Toms River, NJ. A Funeral Mass will be held on Wednesday, January 20, 2021 at 10:45am at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Roman Catholic Church in Whiting, NJ and a viewing will be held prior to the Mass from 9:00am to 10:30am at Manchester Memorial Funeral Home, Whiting for family and close friends.
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