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Obituary: Hermann C. Schwab

Hermann C. Schwab, known as “Gus” to many, died April 1, 2013 peacefully at his apartment in Manhattan at the age of 93. Born on January 8, 1920 to Hermann C. and Ruth Bliss Schwab, he is survived by his wife of 58 years, Meteer, his children Henry Schwab, Lesley Forman, and Margery Weekes from his prior marriage of 12 years to Lesley Ripley, and his children George Schwab and Tatine Kimmick, as well as thirteen grandchildren and four great grandchildren. Sadly he was predeceased by his son Stuart Schwab in 2005.

Schwab graduated from St. Mark’s School in 1937 and Yale College in 1941 and served in France during WWII as a second lieutenant. After the war he became a nationally ranked doubles squash player, playing with John Humes until 1969. Schwab served in several positions at Hanover Bank and then Empire Trust Company from 1946 to 1967. In 1967 he joined the Schroder Trust Company, later becoming an officer and director of Schroder Capital Management and Schroder Capital Funds, and of various Schroder mutual funds. He retired from Schroder in 1998 and was named Director Emeritus. He served as the mayor of the Village of Oyster Bay Cove from 1973-1985 and village trustee from 1965-1998. He was a trustee of St. Luke’s Hospital from 1969-1999, as well as treasurer for several years, and oversaw (with many others) its successful merger with Roosevelt Hospital in 1979. For his work at St. Luke’s Hospital, he was honored with an appointment as a Knight of the Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St. John of Jerusalem.

Schwab also served as Trustee of Newstead Farm in Upperville, Virginia from 1974 until its dispersal sale in 1985. Newstead Farm was a thoroughbred horse breeding farm, which sold its horses at the August Saratoga horse sales and raced its fillies under the tutelage of legendary trainer Woody Stephens. During his tenure, Newstead successfully raced Lareda, a multiple Grade 1 stakes race winner and Miss Oceana, who ran in the Breeders Cup after winning six Grade 1 stakes in two years, finishing as runner up for both American Champion Two-Year-Old Filly and Three-Year-Old Filly in 1983 and 1984.

Schwab was previously a longtime member of the Seawanhaka Corinthian Yacht Club, Piping Rock Club, the Mill Reef Club (Antigua), and the Jester’s Club (England); at his death he was a member of the Knickerbocker Club. An avid sailor, he sailed in the Newport to Bermuda race twelve times and on the New York Yacht Club Cruise twenty-one times. He traveled widely with his wife Meteer, both for work and for pleasure. He will be remembered for his self-deprecating sense of humor. An avowed Anglophile, he charmed many with stories of his frequent visits to the United Kingdom and his many friends there. A connoisseur of Bordeaux red wine, and a home-schooled chef who loved giving dinner parties with Meteer, he shared his favorites liberally with many friends.

A memorial service will be held at St. James Church, 865 Madison Avenue, in Manhattan, (between 71st and 72nd Street), on April 19 at 11:30 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to St. Mark’s School, Alumni Office, 25 Marlborough Road, Southborough, MA 01772 or St. Luke’s Roosevelt Hospital, c/o Continuum Health Partners, Inc., Development Department, 555 W. 57th Street, 18th Floor, New York, NY 10019.