Edward L. Sprecher, long-time NH police chief, passes at 65

By on August 14, 2013

Chief Edward L. Sprecher

Edward L. Sprecher, 65, of New Holland, passed away peacefully, on Tuesday, Aug. 13, 2013 and was welcomed into the arms of his Lord and Savior. He was at home with his wife of 32 years by his side.

Born in Lancaster on May 17, 1948, Ed was the son of the late Robert J. and Josephine (Snader) Sprecher and was the loving husband of Candice R. (Haller) Sprecher.

Always ready to share a smile or a laugh, Ed will forever be remembered as an everyday comedian. He was a lifelong fan of the Three Stooges, Hopalong Cassidy and the Lone Ranger. Known for his generous spirit, he showed compassion and grace to others each and every day.

Ed loved the community and the people of New Holland. His claim to fame was meeting Bruce Springsteen when Bruce came to New Holland to purchase horses in 1996. With great pride, Ed and his wife Candy served as Grand Marshals of the New Holland Farmers Day Parade in 2012.

He graduated from Cocalico High School in 1968 where he was a football player and a wrestler. Ed began his police career in New Holland in 1969 working under his grandfather, Chief Ralph "Chappy" Sprecher. Ed was a graduate of the Pennsylvania State Police Academy in Hershey, and served as a patrolman until he was appointed Chief of Police in 1993. During Ed’s tenure, he focused on community relations and took great pride in knowing his community and being accessible to them. Ed was a member of the Lancaster County Chiefs of Police Association and a founding member of the Fellowship of Christian Police Officers (FCPO). He had many friends in law enforcement who have supported him throughout his illness.

After Ed’s retirement from law enforcement in 2003, he took the weekend off and then reported for his new job as the first full-time security employee at Eastern Lancaster County School District. During the next 10 years, Ed protected the Elanco student body and shared many memories with them that will last lifetimes. "Mr. Sprecher," as the students fondly referred to him, often appeared in the hallways offering candy and coffee to students and faculty alike. He prided himself on never missing a day of school except for when his illness required him to attend doctor appointments.

When Ed could no longer work for the school, he was the driving force behind bringing a School Resource Officer from the New Holland Police Department to the campus of Eastern Lancaster County School District. Ed often walked the halls with the new officer, introducing him to students and faculty to help him get accustomed to the school.

When New Holland Borough Council needed someone to replace a member who had left the area, Ed volunteered to serve on council and did so from 2009 until March 2013.

Throughout Ed’s illness, he remained positive and set an example for living with dignity despite adverse circumstances. In his final months, he enjoyed visits with family, community friends, members of the NHPD and, of course, his students from Elanco.

Ed leaves behind a legacy of having earned 612 free coffees at New Holland Coffee Company as part of their Customer Rewards Program.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his daughter Leslie E. Allgyer and grandson Quinn, also of New Holland and daughter Michelle R. Weaver and granddaughter Addison, of West Lawn, along with three brothers Frederick J. of Ephrata, Gerald L. of Lancaster and William R., of Pequea.

In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by his brother Davy and his sister Grace.

A viewing will be held on Thursday, Aug. 15, from 3 to 8 p.m., at The Chapel at Garden Spot Village, 433 S. Kinzer Ave, New Holland. A second viewing will be held at 1:30 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 16, followed by his funeral service.

Memorial Contributions in Ed’s name can be made to The New Holland Historical Society, PO Box 464, New Holland, PA, 17557, The ALS Association Greater Philadelphia Chapter, 321 Norristown Road, Suite 260, Ambler, PA, 19002, or Hospice and Community Care of Lancaster County, PO Box 4125, Lancaster, PA, 19604.

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