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Published: Sunday, 10/31/2004

Hopewell-Loudon teacher, coach had passion for golf

FOSTORIA - Richard L. "Rick" Herge, a social studies teacher at Hopewell-Loudon High School for 24 years who coached several sports and had also co-owned Loudon Meadows Golf Club for nearly a decade, died Friday evening in the Hospice of Northwest Ohio, Toledo. He was 57.

Information about the cause of Mr. Herge's death was not available yesterday.

Born in Defiance, Mr. Herge graduated from Ohio Northern University in 1970 and taught in Holgate, Paulding, and Montpelier, Ohio, thereafter. He was an agent for Prudential Insurance in Indiana for a while before joining Hopewell-Loudon in 1980.

Mr. Herge primarily taught senior-level government classes, said Geoff Palmer, the Hopewell-Loudon district superintendent.

"He dedicated himself to the students of Hopewell-Loudon," Mr. Palmer said yesterday. "He really had a knack for bringing his classroom to life with the activities he had."

Mr. Herge also helped further his profession by welcoming student teachers into his classroom, even though that meant more work for him, the superintendent said.

Golf was a passion for Mr. Herge. He made his home on the edge of Loudon Meadows, which he co-owned from 1987 until 1995 and of which he continued to be a member. And the golf team at Hopewell-Loudon was one of several teams that he coached over the years, with others including basketball, football, and baseball.

In his spare time, Mr. Herge built and flew remote-controlled model airplanes. He was a member of Moose and Elks lodges in Fostoria and the Sons of the American Legion, and was a member of the Seneca County Republican Committee.

Although Mr. Herge retired from the district in May, Mr. Palmer said he did not believe his health played a role in that decision.

Mr. Herge is survived by his wife of 34 years, the former Nancy Gerken; mother, Norma Herge; daughter, Krista Feindel; son, Todd R. Herge; brother, Bob Herge, and two grandchildren.

The body will be in the Hoening Funeral Home, Fostoria, where the family will receive visitors from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m. Tuesday. Funeral services will begin at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday in the mortuary.

The family suggests memorial tributes to the Hospice of Northwest Ohio.



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