NJ.com reports that state assembly Ronald Dancer (R) has died at the age of 73.
Dancer is reported to have died on Saturday. His death is said to be the result of a long illness. Specifics, however, have not been provided.
Dancer, up until his death on Saturday, had been serving in New Jersey’s general assembly as a Republican since 2002, a span of almost two decades.
Dancer, the son of Stanley Dancer – a member of the Harness Horse Racing Hall of Fame – came from the New Egypt part of Plumstead Township. He was educated at Peddie School in Hightstown and Rutgers University, and he also served in the U.S. army from 1969 through 1971.
Dancer would go on to hold several positions in the New Jersey government for decades. He, most recently, is known for representing New Jersey’s 12th Legislative District. But, Dancer also spent two decades as the mayor of Plumsted, and he spent nearly four decades on the township’s planning board.
Dancer also was a member of the Ocean County Board of Social Services, the Natural Lands Trust Fund Advisory Committee, the Senior Citizens Advisory Board, and the Human Services Advisory Council.
Suffice it to say that Dancer was a monumental figure in New Jersey politics.
“A true gentlemen”
Following the news of his passing, many of Dancer’s colleagues – including his Democrat colleagues – offered tributes to him. Among them was Assembly Speaker Craig J. Coughlin (D-Middlesex).
“I am saddened to learn of the loss of a true gentleman in New Jersey politics,” Coghlin said. “In his two decades of public service in the Assembly, Ron Dancer was always someone who strived to work across the aisle.”
“His absence will certainly be felt by all of us in the Assembly and by the residents of Ocean County he faithfully served,” Coughlin added. “We extend our most heartfelt prayers to all family and friends mourning him.”
New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy (D) also released a statement referring to Dancer as “a workhorse, not a show horse – a proud veteran with a quiet demeanor and humble nature . . . [who] built friendships across the aisle.”
Murphy has ordered the flags to be flown at half-staff.