Jetta Byrnes

Obituary of Jetta A. Byrnes

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Jetta Ann (Velotta Antler) Byrnes, 88, of Ewing, passed away on Tuesday, April 16, 2024 surrounded by her loving family and friends and her beloved cat Gypsy. Jetta was born and raised in Shreveport, LA where she attended St. Vincent Academy. In 1957 she married her first husband, Bob Antler and moved to Philadelphia, PA. During her first marriage and while raising two children Jetta lived in Alabama, Pennsylvania, New York, Ohio and finally in New Jersey. She married her second husband and the love of her love Jim Byrnes in 1989. 


Jetta was one of a kind. She was well known for her love and affection for all. She had a big heart, a generous smile and an infectious laugh. She treated everyone like family, often referring to many as her adopted children. 


Her many talents and interests included tennis, which she continued to play until she was 84. Quilting, stenciling, golf, gardening, cooking, and baking with Jim, were also some of her favorites. She enjoyed playing cards, entertaining on weekends, trips to the beach, and reading. She was an avid movie goer, she loved watching classic and horror movies the most. Dancing, and singing were also passions. She enjoyed traveling with family and friends. Germany was a favorite location, enjoying the history of the country and also visiting friends and family. Jetta was always willing to try new things. 


She worked as a secretary for the radiology dept of Princeton Medical Center, and Hopewell Valley Central High School. Later in life she worked in early morning care for the Hopewell Valley Public Schools, and for a short time at Pennington Quality Market.


Daughter of the late Joseph J. and Florence L (McKellar) Velotta. Jetta is predeceased by her husband James F. Byrnes, her sister Frances ‘Ruth’ Doreck, brother-in-law Ronald Doreck, niece Rosaline Beyersdorf, and nephew John Raush, half-sister, Carolyn Jot Pitman Beaudoin, half-brother Joseph C. Velotta, and step daughter, Annalisa Byrnes. As well as all her aunts and uncles. 


She is survived by her daughters Stacey Antler (Kristopher Gilton), Melissa Antler (Jonathan Bayley) step son Brian Byrnes, daughter-in-law Katya Byrnes, son-in-law Mearl Challender (Annalisa), step daughter and son-in-law Colleen and John Burke, grandchildren Stephen Gilton, Elizabeth Bayley, Thomas Bayley, Sarah Byrnes, Justin Byrnes, James Challender, Julie Challender, Christopher Challender, Micheal Burke, Jamie Burke, and Claire Burke. Her grandchildren were the light in her life. 


She is also survived by “adopted daughter” Cynthia and her husband Donald Harrison, and was Ma-Maw to their children Cole and Stephanie Harrison, and her “adopted son” Paul Ruocco and his wife Susana. As well as her dear friends Daniel Boone and Sharon Boone, thank you for your long time support and love. A special thank you is given to Marpue Darway for the extraordinary care, love and friendship she gave to Jetta.


A celebration of her life will be held on June 29, 2024 from 2-4 pm at Poulson & Van Hise Funeral Directors, 650 Lawrence Road, Lawrenceville, NJ 08648

In lieu of flowers memorial donations can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association ( or St. Jude Hospital for Children (




2:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Saturday, June 29, 2024
Poulson & Van Hise Funeral Directors
650 Lawrence Road
Lawrenceville, New Jersey, United States
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Jetta Byrnes

In Loving Memory

Jetta Byrnes

1935 - 2024

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