A Tribute to Dr. Steve Schwartz

by Gary Kinslow

I am lucky and proud to count this titan, this uber-renaissance man as a friend. He and Barb had recently moved up from a Tollycraft 34 foot trawler to a 43 foot cockpit motor yacht and they were looking forward to a future of cruising where ever the bow pointed. He prosyletized Tollycraft and delighted in serving as my Tollycraft mentor, tirelessly educating me on the the sturdiness of the boat and the mystique of the brand. And the reverence we should hold for Yanmar diesel engines.

He never ceased his effort to find the right boat for me and a slip near his and Barb’s in the Shilshole Bay Marina where we could be neighbors, debating politics, history and health policy, a favorite topic for us both. Sprawled in deck chairs on our boats’ upper decks, we would rebuild America’s health care system over fine wine and draft beer and something tasty. He would be thrilled to know I’ll soon be a Tolly owner myself, due completely to his power of persuasion. But in the meantime, we would content ourselves with long late night telephone conversations, in which I could grasp the concept of about every third phrase, but armed with the knowledge that an artfully placed grunt of agreement would suffice to keep him rolling until that inevitable moment when I nodded off and the phone clattered to the floor.

Steve and Barb and I could be in a restaurant and this grizzly bear would think nothing of hauling his bulk out of his chair and interjecting himself into the midst of another couple or family at the next table because he found something of interest in them, offering his opinion on the topic of the day, whatever that might have been. Barb would roll her eyes, accustomed to this habit but I would sit there with my head buried in my hands, silently saying, “oh here we go again!” But never did his targets take offense. They were enchanted. He had that way about him.

Truly larger than life, but he could be fragile, and I know he sometimes mused that he didn’t have many real friends. He was so wrong. He was my friend, a real, true friend, gained so recently and cherished so deeply. I will miss making fun of him as a clone of Moses striding down the mountain with a smoldering sapphire tablet cradled in each arm. He is sorely missed and my heart goes out to Barb. I count the times I’ve spent with them both as among the richest in my life. My biggest regret is that my wife never had the opportunity to meet them, because that meeting would have enriched us all.

Steve, you and I should have written that paper we discussed, You persuaded me that I still had one in me and it would be a hoot. But without you, it’s only a wistful dream.

0 Comments Add Yours ↓

  1. Roger Rabbit #

    Steve sent out emails to his friends describing his last boat trip, and when I have time, I’ll see if I can assemble those emails and post them as an article.

  2. Mark Adams #

    I agree that Dr. Steve Schwartz will be greatly missed, and yes I have noticed his absence on here and do miss him. I have been reluctant o say much on here as this is and was his blog. His passing may well mean the blog must be rolled up, the presses stopped, and be but a ghost on the internet, a time capsule. Perhaps Dr. Schwartz took a page from Paul Allen and this log is covered in a similar way and Steve’s ghost will continue as will his ownership.
    Still as a practical matter will this blog continue? Did Dr. Schwartz make plans for the blog to continue? What were his wishes on the matter or did he not make plans? If it continues with whom will the buck stop?

    I hope I have ben quiet on the mater for an appropriate amount of time. If you feel I have been premature my apologies.

  3. Roger Rabbit #

    Steve’s blog now belongs to his widow, and what happens to it will be up to her. She has other things on her mind right now.

  4. Scott Meyers #

    Roger Rabbit,
    I spoke with Prof. Schwartz’s wife last night and she said you were taking over the running of the blog.
    Prof. Schwartz video called me on Feb 27th and asked me to become a contributor to his blog. He messaged me the link and I sent him the user name and password I wanted to use, but I seem to be unable to log in. When I click the Log In link under the Meta heading I just get a blank page. I am hoping you can help me out as I would like to post. If you search his friends list on Facebook you will be able to see me there.
    You can feel free to talk to Barbara to confirm.
    Scott Meyers

  5. Roger Rabbit #

    Scott — I don’t know how to fix the login problem, but until I figure that out (if ever), if you want you can write an article, post it in a comment, and then I can cut and paste it into an article posting. Just mention in the comment you want it posted as an article. — RR

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