Oct. 24, 2018 — Andy Vangor was only two weeks away from celebrating his 96th birthday at his favorite spot, the Traveler’s Cove restaurant in Old Town, Florence, but unfortunately the party planned in his honor Oct. 28, will have to carry on without his physical presence.
Yet Andy’s many friends will still feel his wonderful spirit as we remember and honor him while listening to the great live jazz and blues tunes that drew him each week to this comfortable venue.
Andy was the only child of his parents, Andrew Vangor and Julia Klinka, and managed to survive a difficult upbringing in very poor surroundings. He joined the Navy in World War II and was stationed in San Diego where he met and soon married Rhoda Goldman, the love of his life.
After starting a family with two children, Robert and Andrea, the Vangors moved from a small rental house in Venice, Calif., to their first real home in the newly-built community of Lakewood.
Andy worked in the aerospace industry for North American, Douglas, and Hughes Aircraft, and after the children were grown and on their own, he took early retirement and moved with Rhoda to the northern California town of Paradise.
In the late ‘90s, they made their final move north to the gated retirement community of Florentine Estates in Florence, where Andy played golf, Rhoda volunteered at a local elementary school and the two danced weekly at the Traveler’s Cove.
After Rhoda fell to a sudden and unexpected death on that same Cove dance floor, Andy carried on alone and continued to live a great life for the next 14 years with the support of many, many wonderful friends in the Florence area.
He could be found almost every week (usually 2 or 3 times per week) at his special table and on the Cove dance floor (waxed of course by Andy) listening to his favorite bands, growling at the line dancers but especially pleased when he heard great blues tunes being played there.
In his final years he loved to watch sports and play hours of pinochle with his good friend Micheline Perry.
He is survived by his two children and by niece and nephew Lois and Larry.
Andy lived a long and remarkable life staying independent and active in his own home at age 95, until just nine days before he passed peacefully in his sleep at Hubbard’s Retreat.
He will be missed and long remembered in Florence by all who knew him, and he will be honored Sunday, Oct. 28, from 6 to 9 pm at — of course — the Traveler’s Cove.
All music lovers and friends of Andy are welcome to attend.