Doctor Owen B Lovejoy, 81, Navy veteran, father, and dentist, passed away peacefully on 20 April 2018 in Tampa, FL. He is preceded by his father Ashley Lovejoy and mother Helen Lovejoy Tisdale of Winter Haven, FL.’ He is survived by his sister: Dorothea Miller of New Smyrna Beach, FL; son Owen “Reed”, daughter in law Trudy, and grandchildren Jai, Elsa, and Cobie of Tampa, FL.
Owen B. Lovejoy was born on 19 Aug 1936 in Winter Haven, FL. He graduated from Winter Haven High School in 1954 and attended Jacksonville University from 1955-56 earning an A.A. De ee. After college, enlisted in the U.S. Navy and was rated as a Guided Missile Technician. He was accepted into the Naval Aviation Cadet “NAVCAD” Program: went to flight school in Pensacola, FL; earned his commission as an Ensign in the US Naval Reserve; and designated as a Naval Aviator Wings in 1959. As a Naval aviator, he flew for the Navy in Airborn Early Warning Squadron 2 at Patuxent River, MD flying the “Willie Victor 2” Lockheed EC-121 Warning Star for two years and VX6 in Antarctica flying the “Gooney Bird” Douglas R4D surveying the continent for three Antarctic summers. The Lovejoy Glacier (70048’S 160010’E) was named after him for his service in Antarctica by the Advisory Committee on Antarctic Names. After leaving active service in the Naval Reserve, he returned to college on the GI Bill earning a B.S. in Biology from Jacksonville University and D.D.S. from Emory University. Following dental school, he moved to Brooksville, FL in 1970 and opened a private dental practice in Brooksville and later Spring Hill. He practiced dentistry in Hernando County for 20 years and served on the Hernando County Aviation Authority. In Hernando County, with the Airport Authority, his efforts helped establish what today is the Brooksville-Tampa Bay Regional Airport and Industrial Park. In 1991, he retired from the U.S. Naval Reserve as a Commander after
35 years of combined enlisted and commissioned service as a Dental Officer and Pilot.
He also retired from private dentistry in 1991, moved to New Smyrna Beach, FL. In retirement, he bought a sailboat – the Encantada and sailed her throughout the Caribbean and Atlantic seaboard for many years. While cruising the Caribbean, he performed probono dentistry work for the Q’eqchi’ natives on the Rio Dulce River in Guatemala for several years and helped establish a house boat/floating dental clinic that traveled the Rio Dulce performing dentistry in remote villages along the river. He was an avid aviator, sailor, spear fisherman, and outdoorsman. He was a member of Saint Peter the Fisherman Episcopal Church in New Smyrna Beach. He was loved and will be missed. “Fair Winds and Following Seas”