William E. Herron, 70, a Philadelphia native who rose to the rank of two-star rear admiral in the Navy Reserve and worked as a certified public account, died Saturday, Dec. 19, at his home in Estero, Fla.

He was receiving hospice care for lung cancer, said son Timothy.

Mr. Herron was born in Philadelphia to immigrant parents from Ireland, said his wife, Regina.

He graduated from Cardinal Dougherty High School in 1963 and then earned a bachelor's degree in accounting from La Salle University in 1967.

While at La Salle, he participated in officer candidate school and then joined the Navy when he graduated, his wife said.

His reserve career began in 1970, as did his job as a certified public account and partner at Arthur Andersen in Philadelphia.

He served at Willow Grove Naval Air Base from 1970 until 1983 and later at the Naval Air Station Patuxent River in Maryland.

Mr. Herron was promoted to rear admiral in 1994.

When asked which career he valued most, his wife replied, "Family."

"He was pretty fantastic," she added.

They met while he was a senior at La Salle and she worked for Brown Bros. Harriman & Co., a private bank. They were married in 1968.

He was an avid golfer and Eagles fan, continuing to follow the team closely after he retired from the Navy Reserve and Arthur Andersen in 2002 and moving to Florida, his wife said.

In addition to his wife and son, Mr. Herron is survived by another son, Liam; daughters Jennifer, Jessica, and Rebecca; and two sisters.

A funeral service was Wednesday, Dec. 23, in Fort Myers, Fla.

bmoran@phillynews.com 215-854-5983 @RobertMoran215