Alan Dare (Jake) Field Jr.
AGE: 86 • Keansburg
Alan Dare Field Jr. (Jake), 86, passed away on Wednesday, April 3, 2013, after a period of declining health, at Bayside Manor Assisted Living Facility in Keansburg. Mr. Field was a resident of Fair Haven for 46 years prior to moving to Little Silver in 1997 and living there until 2011. Jake was born in Long Branch and grew up in Eatontown. He attended grammar school in Little Silver and later attended Admiral Farragut Academy (Pine Beach, NJ) and Rutgers Preparatory School. He served in the Navy for 2 years from 1944 to 1946 and in the Naval Reserve in 1951. He studied at Rutgers University; then left to go into the family business, Lovett's Nursery, Inc. in Little Silver, eventually becoming executive vice-president. He was also president of Diamond State Nursery in Delaware, which was another family-owned business. He was a member of the New Jersey Association of Nurserymen.
Mr. Field was the great-grandson of John Thompson Lovett, a pioneer in the field of agriculture, who was one of the most influential businessmen in Little Silver's early history. He started his nursery business there in 1878. It grew to become the largest nursery on the eastern seaboard and also gained an international reputation for excellence. It was said that at one time he owned half the land in Little Silver and was the town's major employer. Lovett's Nursery also included land in Deal (pre-1900), Fair Haven, Rumson, Midddletown, Holmdel, Colts Neck and Lincroft. He served as postmaster in the early 1900's and built the post office at 56 Church Street. It was J.T. Lovett who circulated a petition in 1878 to adopt the name of Little Silver for the town.
Mr. Lovett died in 1922 leaving the nursery to be run by his son, Lester C. Lovett. When Lester died in 1960, his grandsons and J.T. Lovett's great-grandsons, Alan and his brother, Lester C.L. Field took over the business. The Little Silver office was moved to Phalanx at Colts Neck in 1963 and the company was liquidated in 1969.
Mr. Field was an avid hunter and fisherman and could be seen for many years at the wheel of his beloved "Storm Petrel" fishing offshore and cruising on the Navesink and Shrewsbury Rivers. He was a lifelong member of Ducks Unlimited, as well as a longtime supporter of New Jersey Audubon and the American Littoral Society. Mr. Field was a charter member of the Fair Haven Fields committee where he made his opinions known, kept the trails clear, and was known as "the birdman of the fields", identifying and documenting the many species of birds found there. He was also a volunteer at Sandy Hook participating in the protection of piping plovers and banding of ospreys. The boardwalk at Spermaceti Cove at Sandy Hook became his favorite place to spend time after losing his eyesight to macular degeneration.
Mr. Field was preceded in death by his parents, Alan Dare Field and Janet Lovett Field Fox. Mr. Field was the loving husband of 57 years to the late Grace Woodhead Field. He leaves two sons, Alan "Ruddy" and wife, Catherine Patricia Grover Field of Atlantic Highlands, and Thomas and wife, Jae Soon Field, residing in Asuncion, Paraguay; a daughter, Elizabeth and husband, Jack Reynolds of Cohasset, Massachusetts; a brother, Lester C. L. Field and wife Patricia of Townsend, Montana; 12 grandchildren, 17 great-grandchildren, a niece and 6 nephews.
Visitation will be held from 4 to 7 p.m. Monday, April 15 at the Thompson Memorial Home, 310 Broad St., Red Bank. The funeral will be private. Memorial donations, in lieu of flowers, may be made to Friends of the NJSL/TBBC (New Jersey State Library Talking Book & Braille Center), Development Dept., 2300 Stuyvesant Ave., Trenton, NJ 08618-3226 (www.njlbh.org