Herman Henry Fischer, Jr., 83
TUCSON — Herman Henry Fischer, Jr. passed away at the age of 83 years old on the last day of 2020 after a short bout with Covid and a much longer one with dementia. Herman was born July 18, 1937 in Fremont, Michigan. He arrived in Tombstone, Arizona in 1947 after his parents, Nora and Herman, relocated there for health reasons. In his own words, “I thought my parents had taken me from Heaven to Hell,” but he soon developed a love and dedication to the town that would last a lifetime and eventually serve as a city councilman and volunteer firefighter. Always a leader in whatever activity he participated in, he played football and basketball and was named as Boy’s State representative in his junior year at Tombstone High.
After graduating from THS in 1955, Herman went on to attend the University of Arizona, graduating with an education degree in 1959. Having been inspired and mentored by THS coach and educator John L. Wyatt, he set out to follow in his footsteps and took a job at Ft. Huachuca as a junior high PE teacher and coach of all athletics. In 1963 a job teaching and coaching opened up at Tombstone High School where he would remain for his entire career. His THS basketball teams would win six conference championships and make nine trips to the state tournament including a 2nd place finish in 1977. Herman had the honor of coaching the Arizona High School South All-Stars in 1966 and 1971 as well as coaching the Arizona High School All-Stars against the Utah All-Stars in 1978. While his football teams at THS weren’t nearly as successful as the basketball teams, he and assistant coach and lifelong friend Johnny Escarcega coached the 1969 team to a stunning opening game upset of Marana High, breaking their 30 game winning streak. In 1971 he became principal of THS, a position he held until his retirement in 1991. He took pride in all of his students and athletes and was the ultimate “Yellowjacket” with THS being the center of his universe for most of his life.
Herman married Mary Lou Levinson in 1985 and after his retirement they moved to Tucson where they established and ran businesses that included the Airport Inn and Scholar’s Bookstore. Predeceased by his wife on May 23, 2017 and brothers Jack and Kenneth. He is survived by stepson Louie (Myra) Levinson and stepdaughter Diane (Harley) Kurlander as well as nieces Debbie (Larry) Brant of Fremont, Michigan and Connie Hull of Grand Rapids, Michigan. No public services will be held due to Covid restrictions and burial will be private in Tombstone. The family asks that donations in his memory be made to: Monica Ridge Memorial Scholarship Fund c/o Betty Ridge, Box 64, Tombstone, Arizona 85638.