Eric Eicher, 79, passed away on July 6, 2023. He was born on August 8, 1943, in Flint, Michigan to the late Rev. Howard and Margaret Eicher. Eric grew up in Detroit, MI, where his family relocated. He attended Cooley High School, actively participating in football, hockey, and the band. In 1961, Eric graduated from Cooley High School. Subsequently, he pursued higher education at the University of Sioux Falls, earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration.
In 1963, Eric married Mary Ann, and together they had two children, Kari and Mark. Eric commenced his professional career with the Mobil Oil Company, eventually relocating to Olathe, Kansas. After a few years, he joined the Union Gas Company, where he initiated his real estate career in the company's real estate department. Eric played a significant role in the development of industrial and commercial projects at Mid-America Real Estate properties in Lenexa, Kansas. As a testament to his contributions, a street within the development was named 'Eicher Drive,' extending through Shawnee residential properties. Eric's involvement extended to projects such as the JCPenney Distribution Center and nursing homes in Edgerton, Kansas.
Eric's dedication to the community led him to become involved in Olathe government. He served on the Olathe City Commission and held the position of Vice Mayor. Additionally, Eric actively participated in the Olathe Chamber of Commerce and became the President of the Ambassador Club in 1975. In 1978, Eric married Brenda, and joined her three children, Stephen, Benjamin, and Nicole. They subsequently relocated to Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan.
Eric's professional journey led him to be employed by the State of Michigan, tasked with transforming Kincheloe Air Force Base, which had closed in 1977, into a property suitable for business, industrial, and residential use. This endeavor resulted in the establishment of Chippewa County International Airport. In 1980, Eric joined Stone & Webster, focusing on the development of real estate in Sabal Park, Tampa, Florida. Sabal Park grew to become one of the largest business and industrial parks in the state at that time. In 1998, Eric was inducted into the Tampa Bay Real Estate Hall of Fame.
During his career, Eric became actively involved in the Commercial Real Estate Development Association (NAIOP), serving on both the local and national levels. In 1989, he was appointed as the National President of NAIOP, which involved extensive travel to 42 cities across the country.
Following his time at Sabal Park, Eric established his own real estate company, Commercial Brokerage Company, focusing on property development in and around the Tampa Bay area. One of his final major developments was brokering property in Wesley Chapel for a retail project called The Grove. The Grove now anchors popular national and regional retailers, local boutiques and family entertainment including a multiplex movie theatre.
Apart from his professional endeavors, Eric actively engaged with Clearwater for Youth, dedicating his time to support his childrens’ activities, including Mark's football games, Steve and Ben's soccer and baseball games, and Nicole's cheerleading. Eric assumed the role of President in that organization and was honored to serve on the board alongside notable figures such as Joe DiMaggio and Tommy Lasorda.
Eric enjoyed staying active by playing tennis and participating in business golf tournaments. He also loved his pontoon boat, traveling in the waters around Tampa Bay and Clearwater. Antiquing was a passion of Eric’s, and as a result, The Eicher Antique Shop, was in business for many years.
Eric was a loving husband, father, and friend, known for his unwavering commitment and wholehearted dedication to both his personal relationships and his community involvement. He was cherished by his family and all who knew him.
Eric is survived by his devoted wife of 45 years, Brenda Fay Allen Eicher, his daughter Kari, his son Mark and his wife Kim, his grandchildren Megan and Ben, his son Stephen and his wife Ashlee, his grandson Harrison, his son Benjamin and his wife Susan, his grandchildren Jillian, Kevin, and Madeline, his daughter Nicole and her husband Alejandro, his granddaughter Eliana, and his sister Edith and her husband Dan Gates.
Friends and relatives are invited to attend Eric's memorial service, which will be held at the United Methodist Church of the Resurrection, Westley Covenant Chapel, in Leawood, Kansas on July 15, 2023, 2:00 PM. Reverend Dennis Apple, will officiate the service. The family will have a private internment at Johnson County Memorial Gardens. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Kansas University Endowment Association (KUEA) and mailed to Dr. Rajesh Pahwa, KUMC, Parkinson’s Center, 3599 Rainbow Blvd, MS 3042, Kansas City, Kansas 66160.