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Updated: Hermosa Beach City Treasurer Dies at 73

John Workman dies just days after losing his post as City Treasurer in a municipal election.

Editor's Note: This article was updated with comment from Mayor Howard Fishman on Friday at 7:56 p.m.

Longtime Hermosa Beach City Treasurer John Workman, who lost his seat as treasurer Tuesday, has died.

He was 73.

"The City Council, all the city’s employees and people across Hermosa Beach are deeply saddened by the passing of John Workman," said Hermosa Beach Mayor Howard Fishman in a statement Friday. "His unwavering dedication to public service and the City of Hermosa Beach has been an inspiration for all of us who work for the city and for its residents. He was a beloved figure in City Hall who will be missed."

The Easy Reader reported Friday afternoon that John's wife of 50 years, Mary Ellen Workman, found him collapsed in their Hermosa Beach home. John previously was hospitalized for suffering heart attack-like symptoms, according to the report.

Hermosa resident David Cohn defeated John in Tuesday's election with 56 percent of ballots cast.

The City Council unanimously appointed John to the city’s treasurer post in 1993 when the incumbent resigned the post in the middle of his term. Then John ran unopposed for the job in all but two of the subsequent elections, with the most recent producing his only election loss.

As treasurer, John was responsible for the deposit and security of public funds, handling of trust funds, as well as investment of city funds and monthly fund balance reports, according to the city.

"John was an enthusiastic individual, giving generously of his time and energy to make Hermosa Beach a better place for all who live and work here," Fishman said. "He was known throughout the community for his willingness to volunteer to help where he was needed, and we all appreciated his gentle spirit."

John participated in the for 33 years and was a former president. He also delivered Meals on Wheels for the Salvation Army for 10 years. In 1989, John was named Man of the Year by the for his volunteer work.

John served on the boards of the Salvation Army, Beach Cities Health District and Hermosa Beach Sister City Association. He also served on the supervisory committee of the South Bay Credit Union and as an aide to Rotary International’s district governor.

John, the retired owner of in Hermosa Beach, was born in Red Oak, Iowa, and graduated from Redondo Union High School in 1956. He is survived by Mary Ellen as well as his children Sharon Thompson, Lisa Edwards and Joe Workman, and six grandchildren.

Services are pending with Rice Mortuary in Torrance.

Feel free to share memories of John here on Hermosa Beach Patch in the comments below.

klc November 12, 2011 at 01:28 AM
Our thoughts and prayers are with the Workman family. John was an amazing man, a true gentleman and of the utmost character. He was an upstanding public servant who has served our City well and selflessly. Hermosa Beach has lost a treasure. God bless and rest in peace. You will be deeply missed.
Bob Atkins November 13, 2011 at 02:30 AM
So very sad to read of his passing. I thought he had done a very good job as Treasurer and would have liked to see him continue in that capacity.
Mere Thompson November 18, 2011 at 04:51 PM
What a shame, politics being what they are. John loved his family, his city, helped any and everyway he could. I admired him and care that he was hurt so badly in the election. Annette

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