George G. Kuhnel, retired firefighter

George G. Kuhnel
George G. Kuhnel
Posted: January 23, 2014

George G. Kuhnel, 66, who retired in 2003 after a career as a firefighter and paramedic in Gloucester City, died of lung and brain cancer at his home in Port St. Lucie, Fla., on Dec. 18, 2013.

A memorial service in Gloucester City has been set for Saturday.

"He had that presence about him that he wanted to save people," a daughter, Jennifer Cermele, said. "He was an amazing guy who enjoyed taking care of people."

Mr. Kuhnel was training with other first responders in Lakehurst on the morning of Sept. 11, 2001. "They were deployed that very morning" to the site of the World Trade Center attacks, she said, "and spent the next two weeks" recovering bodies.

Mr. Kuhnel graduated from Camden Catholic High School, where he was a member of the football and wrestling teams.

He served in the Navy from 1967 to 1969 in South Vietnam, working as a combat medic with Marine units during the Tet Offensive.

Mr. Kuhnel returned to South Jersey to work for post offices in Camden and Cherry Hill, his wife, Deborah, said from their Florida home.

In the 1970s, he graduated as an emergency medical technician and paramedic from a program at Underwood-Memorial Hospital in Woodbury.

In 1981, he spent six months as a medical technician with an American corporation, helping to build an Israeli military and civilian air force base north of Eilat.

After working as director of the medic training program at Underwood in the 1980s, he graduated as a registered nurse at Gloucester County College in 1988.

Besides his daughter, Jennifer, and Deborah, his wife of 10 years, Mr. Kuhnel is survived by son Timothy, daughter Kristina Klukiewski, a brother, a sister, and five grandchildren. He is also survived by his former wife, Margaret Albano.

A visitation was set from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 25, at the McCann-Healey Funeral Home, 851 Monmouth St., Gloucester City, before 4:30 p.m. memorial services there.

Donations may be sent to any lifesaving agency of one's choice.

Condolences may be offered to the family at

610-313-8134 @WNaedele


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