Ocean County Assemblyman Ronald S. Dancer died Saturday at the age of 73. A conservative Republican, Dancer served in the Assembly for 20 years and previously for decades in local government.
Prior to being an elected official, Dancer served in the U.S. military from 1969 to 1971. He also bred and professionally raced horses for 30 years.
The Republican Party in Dancer’s district will now have to choose someone to fill out the 1.5 years that remain on Dancer’s current term.
“Tammy and I are deeply saddened to learn of the passing of Assemblyman Ron Dancer,” Governor Phil Murphy said in a statement. “True to his roots in one of New Jersey’s storied equestrian racing families, in public service he was a work horse not a show horse. A proud veteran with a quiet demeanor and humble nature, Ron built friendships across the aisle. His focus on New Jersey’s agricultural, horse-racing, and tourist industries, and our honored military veterans, leaves a lasting legacy. Our state flags will be lowered to half-staff in his honor and memory. His wife, Brenda, their children and grandchildren, and the entire Dancer family are in all of our thoughts this weekend.”