Donald E. Luck
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AGE: 84 •
Donald E. Luck, 84, died Saturday, July 5, at the Meadow Lakes Health Center in East Windsor, New Jersey. Born in Oshkosh in 1930, Don was the son of the late Lester Luck and Ina Dunbar Luck and the stepson of Hermina de Hartog Luck. He spent his youth in Waupun, Wisconsin, where his mother, the local librarian, encouraged his love of books and libraries. As a boy, Don used to lie under her desk reading while she worked. Don interrupted his studies at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, from 1951 to 1953 to serve in the US Army, where he worked as a topographic surveyor with a team mapping isolated areas of the Philippine Islands. He returned to Madison to complete a BS in Sociology in 1954. In 1955 he received an MS in Library Science from Columbia University. Don began his professional career at Beloit College, where he was Assistant Cataloguer from 1955 to 1957. From 1957 to 1968 he held positions in the UCLA Libraries, including the Biomedical Library and the Laboratory of Nuclear Medicine. In 1969 Don moved East to join the Rutgers University Libraries in New Brunswick as Associate Librarian for Technical Services. In 1987, motivated by a longstanding interest in the history of jazz and jazz musicians, he joined the staff of the Rutgers Institute of Jazz Studies on the Newark campus, where he remained until his retirement in 2000. While working in New Brunswick and Newark, Don could often be seen riding his bike around the city during his lunch hour, and in the 1980s he was Advisor to the Rutgers Cycling Club. Ardent conservationist, gardener, biking enthusiast, lover of family, books, music, and good food, Don was a resident of Cranbury for 45 years. In the 1970s, Don, working with Don Maddox and John Bloom, organized the first glass recycling program in the village as an entirely volunteer effort. Glass was collected and sorted by color in the Luck driveway and then trucked to a recycling center by John Bloom. All proceeds were donated to the Cranbury First Aid Squad. As a biker, Don knew all the rural roads around Cranbury, and he followed the major European bike races on television, especially the Tour de France. He was a longtime member of the Sierra Club and the Somerset Wheelmen.
Don is survived by his wife of 60 years, Beverly, a daughter Margaret Luck and her husband Stephen Widenhouse, a son Andrew and his wife Lynn Mullins, and three grandchildren: Desmond Luck and Luke and Sophie Widenhouse.
A celebration of Donald Luck's life will be held at 2 PM on Sunday, September 7, at the First Presbyterian Church of Cranbury, 22 South Main Street, Cranbury, with a reception to follow in the Fellowship Hall. Donations may be made to the Cranbury Public Library Foundation, 23 North Main Street, Cranbury, New Jersey 08512. Arrangements are under the direction of AS Cole Son & Co., 22 North Main Street, Cranbury, New Jersey.
A.S. Cole Son & Co.
22 North Main Street
Cranbury, NJ 08512
Published in Home News Tribune on July 12, 2014