After graduating from high school here, Bruce Stephen Bunce of East Hampton pursued his love for food and cooking. Possessing no formal training and only natural talent, he worked in several local restaurants, including the Maidstone Arms, Gordon’s of Amagansett, and Spring Close.
Mr. Bunce died on June 13 in Lady Lake, Fla., where he had recently moved to be cared for by family members following a cancer diagnosis. He was 60.
Stuffed flounder and shrimp scampi were among the most beloved recipes in his repertoire. And when it came to his famed creamed spinach, Robin Shepard, described as his favorite (and only) sister, said he would never divulge his exact recipe.
A lover of golf and family, in later years he helped to run his family’s business, the Long Island Coffee Company, which distributed Vermont Pure Natural Spring Water, until both businesses were sold. Before learning of his illness, he had been working for Gosman’s Fish Market in Montauk.
He was born in Amityville on Feb. 19, 1953, the first child of Albert and Patricia Bunce. Though his parents now live in Lady Lake, they were longtime residents of Cosdrew Lane in East Hampton, where they moved in 1970.
In addition to his parents, Mr. Bunce is survived by a son, Robert Bunce of Hicksville. And along with Ms. Shepard, who lives in North Carolina, he is survived by three other siblings, Michael Bunce Sr. of Water Mill, Kevin Bunce Sr. of East Hampton, and Keith Bunce of North Carolina. Two nieces, five nephews, and two great-nephews survive him, as does his former wife, Patricia Bunce.
On June 16, a family pastor conducted a small private service in Lady Lake. Mr. Bunce’s ashes will be spread off Montauk Point during a memorial service planned for October. His family has suggested donations to the Montauk Point Lighthouse Museum, P.O. Box 943, Montauk 11954.