Paul Francis Henegan
June 9, 1954 to April 20, 2021
Paul Francis Henegan, 66, of Bergenfield, NJ, died of prostate cancer on April 20, 2021, at Holy Name Medical Center Hospice in Teaneck, NJ, with two of his siblings at his side. He was predeceased by his parents, Paul Joseph and Ann Louise (Selinger) Henegan, and was firstborn of their seven children.
He is survived by his six siblings: Maureen, Stephen, Colleen and her wife Nancy Henry, Daniel, Michael and his wife Allison, and James and his wife Jennifer Hager. He also leaves behind his life partner Caroll Anglade, his former spouse Toni Kalish, nephews (Bobby, Ian, Matthew and Jeremy), nieces (Patricia, Erin, Lilly and Katie), 38 cousins, a lifetime of musical band mates and colleagues, and many good friends.
Paul was born June 9, 1954, grew up in Rockville Centre, Long Island, NY, and lived for much of his adult life in Miami, FL, as well as NJ. He attended St. Agnes Cathedral Elementary School, Chaminade High School, and Syracuse University. Always curious about the world around him and what makes it tick, he had a strong passion for learning and was continually reading and absorbing knowledge. He spoke English, French, German and Creole fluently, knew at least a little bit about everything, especially science and computer science. He was a gifted photographer, an avid cyclist, and a lifelong practitioner of Tai Chi.
His overriding passion was music. He started playing saxophone in the 3rd grade when he was old enough to join the St. Agnes school band, and soon was marching, performing and recording with school ensembles, starting a rock and roll band, and composing his own music. In high school, he performed with the Chaminade High School Band, took part in musical theater productions, composed a rock opera, and traveled Europe and the Soviet Union with the All-American Wind Band. He studied at the prestigious Syracuse University School of Music, as its first saxophone major, and was part of the SU Jazz Workshop, playing locally and at jazz festivals.
As an accomplished professional musician, he performed and recorded many forms of music -- from Baroque to modern jazz and every genre and style in between -- on the baritone, tenor, alto and soprano saxophones, as well as alto and bass clarinets, oboe, English horn, bassoon, contra bassoon, tenor, alto and soprano flutes, keyboards, percussion, and guitars. He was an in-demand recording session musician, arranger, and transcriber.
He made his greatest contribution and gave most of his energy to his work with three different world-renowned Haitian Konpa bands: Tabou Combo, System Band, and Magnum Band. For over 30 years he performed and recorded with them in the Caribbean, Central America, West Africa, France, the US and Canada.
When his body failed him through chronic migraines, physical injury, and finally prostate cancer, which touched nearly every bone in his body, he suffered much but maintained his dignity, drive, and sense of humor. He was loved, appreciated, and respected by his peers and his audiences alike. His presence, professionalism, wit, keen intellect, compassion, and gifts of expression will be missed by all whose lives he touched.
Visiting will be on May 8, 2021 at Riewerts Memorial Home, 187 South Washington Avenue, Bergenfield, NJ 07621.from 2 pm to 8 pm. Within that time we will schedule time for Eulogies, prayer service, and possible live music. Parts will include Zoom access.