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Arthur Herzog dies; former Long Islander, pharmacist was 93

Arthur Herzog is shown on his last visit

Arthur Herzog is shown on his last visit to Long Island in the summer of 2006. Credit: Bob Herzog

When Arthur Herzog owned a Harlem pharmacy, local residents relied so much on his medical advice that they affectionately called him "Doc."

"Back then, the pharmacist was trusted, and people would say, 'This hurts, that hurts,' and he would say, 'Try that,' " said one of Herzog's three sons, Newsday sports writer Bob Herzog. "There wasn't so much concern about liability then and the pharmacist was trusted by his customers."

When the pharmacy was later burned down during rioting after the 1968 assassination of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., Bob Herzog said, many of his father's customers called to say how sorry they were for what had happened to his store and to tell him how much they loved him.

Arthur Herzog, a longtime resident of Long Island, died Friday at Rancho Mirage Health & Rehabilitation Center in California. He was 93.

Born in the Bronx, the former East Meadow and Dix Hills resident was living in Palm Desert, California, after retiring in 1988. His approximately 40-year pharmaceutical career included working at the defunct Genovese Drug Stores and Tick Tock pharmacy, both in East Northport.

Herzog became a pharmacist after graduating from James Monroe High School in the Bronx and serving in the South Pacific during World War II as a Marine sergeant. He was a gunner on the Douglas SDB Dauntless, a dive bomber.

"He enlisted soon after Pearl Harbor," Bob Herzog said. "It was honorable to enlist back then -- the enemy was clear-cut and there was a rush to enlist in his neighborhood."

After serving in the military, Arthur Herzog received a scholarship to Springfield College in Massachusetts and was planning to be a gym teacher, but changed his plans after meeting his future wife, Bernice. He attended the Fordham University School of Pharmacy on the G.I. Bill.

Bob Herzog said family was his father's passion along with baseball and weightlifting.

"There's one less hero on the planet today," said Arthur's son Larry of San Diego. "My father cared deeply about others and not about himself."

In addition to Larry and Bob Herzog, who lives in Holbrook, Herzog is survived by a son, Ron of Palm Desert; a sister, Muriel DeRenzis of Gaithersburg, Maryland; and three grandchildren. Funeral arrangements are pending.

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