Services for the namesake of Ed Morse Cadillac Brandon will be held tonight, July 6, in the auditorium of Florida Atlantic University in Boca Raton, according to an online report posted by the South Florida Sun Sentinel.
Ed Morse dealerships, including the one at 11020 Causeway Blvd. in Brandon, will close early today, at 2 p.m., in honor of the "industry pioneer, philanthropist, family man and good friend," according to the Ed Morse Cadillac Brandon Web site.
Morse, founder and chairman of Ed Morse dealerships, reportedly died in Boca Raton of natural causes.
Ed Morse Cadillac Brandon is known to Greater Brandon residents not just for its showroom but also for the free weekend valet-parking service it sponsors at the Westfield Brandon shopping mall. That service, outside the Restaurant Courtyard on the west side of the mall, is open Friday at 4 p.m., Saturday at 10 a.m. and Sunday at 11 a.m.
Ed Morse Cadillac Brandon sells new and used Cadillacs in the Tampa Bay region, making a point on its Web site to invite residents of Bradenton, Lakeland and Plant City to "head in to Ed Morse Cadillac in Brandon" as well.
Morse was chairman and founder of the Ed Morse Automotive Group, a 66-year-old family business that spans four generations and began in 1946 when Morse and his father, Alex, opened a small car rental company, according to the Sun Sentinel report, which delves into the history of the company in greater detail.
The report also gives details of Morse’s life, including that he was a decorated World War II veteran of the Pacific theater, and of the company’s philanthropy, which includes raising more than $1.3 million for the Muscular Dystrophy Association, through an annual golf tournament.
Mention is made, too, of Morse being “dragged into the on-going scandal surrounding convicted Ponzi schemer Scott Rothstein.” A lawyer for the family at the time reportedly told the Sun Sentinel that family members were victims of Rothstein, their former attorney.
Morse reportedly is survived by his wife, Carol; five great-grandchildren; two sisters, Nancy Stringer and Priscilla Robb; and a brother-in-law, Jack Stringer. Morse’s brother, Alex, died in 2007.
Tonight’s July 6 service in the auditorium of Florida Atlantic University is scheduled to run from 6-8 p.m., at 777 Glades Road.