Former Nassau County Commissioner David C. Howard has passed away.

Oxley Heard
Obituary Notice

November 15, 2021

Mr. David C. Howard, 72, passed away Monday, November 1, 2021 at his home.

Born in New Castle, Indiana, he was the son of the late Lloyd and Martha Fudge Howard. David grew up as the son and grandson of a Funeral Directors and followed his grandfather and father’s footsteps into their family business.

While attending Parsons College in Fairfield, Iowa David met his future wife, Gail Learch. After college David returned to his family’s funeral home in Cambridge City, Indiana. He successfully operated that business for many years. His drive and ambition served him well throughout his life.

He started an ambulance service that grew and expanded its service to include providing needed emergency transport for the Indianapolis 500 race for several years. Eventually this endeavor would lead David into the beginnings of his career in public service. The Governor of Indiana appointed David to Statewide Commission which established the beginning standards for emergency and ambulance services. As a 32nd degree Mason, Dave worked to raise funds for schizophrenia research and also serviced at Chariman of the Easter Seals campaign in eastern Indiana. Some 30 years later he would be honored by then Governor, Michael Pence, for leadership and philanthropy.

In 1989 Dave and his family moved to Amelia Island. There was not much development on the island at the time and they settled in the newly developed Summer Beach. David’s belief that much of the development was unrestrained led him to run for the Nassau County Commission where he served from 1998 – 2002. David continued to own an embroidery business in Indiana and ran the business from his home on Amelia Island. The business had several successful contracts, including one with the American Legion.

David’s service allowed him to be involved with various accomplishments around the county including the restoration of the historic courthouse on Centre Street, the Dee Dee Bartels boat ramp, the boat ramp on Old Nassauville Road, the Goffinsville Park and helping shape the Nassau County Comprehensive Plan for road planning, public services and life safety infrastructure.

Despite his many professional accomplishments, David was especially proud of his family. He enjoyed seeing his children grow up on Amelia Island and watching them become successful adults. He especially enjoyed his three grandchildren.

He leaves behind his wife of 48 years, Gail L. Howard; his children, Meredith Cohen and her husband, Lee and Kip Howard, all of Fernandina Beach; his three grandchildren, Willam and Asher Cohen and Grier Howard.

A service to remember and celebrate his life will be announced at a later date.