Herschel Harry LUCE
Herschel Harry LUCE
  • September 2, 1924 - April 5, 2017
  • Clermont, Florida

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Herschel H. Luce, Jr., 92, of Winter Garden, Florida, passed on peacefully Wednesday morning, April 5, 2017. Herschel was born September 2, 1924 in Baltimore, Maryland to the late Alice Carrie (Murname) Luce and the late Herschel H. Luce, Sr.

Herschel grew up in Pitman, New Jersey. He was always passionate about serving his country and community. He was a WW II Veteran of the United States Army Air Corps (1943-1946) and then served in the Naval Reserve. He was a Police Officer and Sergeant for the Pitman Police Department for 18 years beginning October 12, 1948. Herschel married his one true love, his "Honey Chile," Emma Jean Sahms on September 2, 1966 and enjoyed 50 years of happy marriage with her. Shortly following their wedding, the couple moved to Lantana, Florida in 1968 with Jean’s two sons. In Lantana, Herschel owned and ran Herschel’s Railway News, a newspaper, card and gift shop. Ever a public servant, Herschel campaigned and won a seat on the Lantana Town Council where he served as Councilman for 3 years, from 1974-1977. His other occupations included several years serving in the Funeral Home industry and as a private security guard. Throughout his adult life, his hobbies included anything related to trains, railroading, music and singing. He was incredibly supportive of his children, serving with the Lake Worth High School Junior ROTC, and holding the office of President in the Band Parents’ Association during the late 80’s. In 2004, shortly after Herschel’s full retirement, he and Jean moved to Winter Garden, Florida to be closer to family. Herschel has many accomplishments in his life to be celebrated. More than almost any other personal accomplishment, Herschel was tremendously proud of his community service as a committed Lions Club International member, which spanned nearly 60 years of his life, and during which he held a variety of offices within the local Lions Clubs in Pitman, Lantana and Ocoee. During his course of service as a Lion, Herschel had bestowed upon him the Melvin Jones Fellowship Award, which is “the highest form of recognition provided by Lions Club International Foundation (LCIF) and embodies humanitarian ideas consistent with the nature and purpose of Lionism.” In 2014, Herschel was awarded Life Membership through the Ocoee Lions Club, which is a privilege available to members who have maintained active membership for at least 20 years.

Herschel was extremely loving and proud of his family. He was preceded in death by his parents, Alice and Herschel, Sr., half-sister Sharon Crane, nephew Robert R. Blair and his granddaughter Delaney L. Ketts. He is survived by his wife of 50 years, E. Jean Luce, children David N. (Paula) Sahms, Kenneth W. Sahms, L. Dianne Ketts, H. Daniel (Lauren) Luce, sister Shirley A. Blair, brother Melvin E. Luce and many loving nieces, nephews, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

A special thank you to the caring staff at Quality Health Care Center and Vitas Hospice & Palliative Care in Winter Garden.

Visitation will be from 7:00-9:00 PM at Baldwin-Fairchild Funeral Home in Winter Garden on Saturday, April 8. Memorial Services for Herschel will be held beginning at 2:00 PM on Saturday, April 22 at the Ocoee Lions Clubhouse. In lieu of flowers, the family invites you to please consider making a donation in Herschel’s memory to the Ocoee Lions Club, P.O. Box 538, Ocoee, FL 34761. Condolences may be offered at www.baldwinfairchild.com