Arthur Charles Heitzman, 92, peacefully passed away on Thursday, July 11, 2013 in Katy, Texas with his loving daughter, Lisa, at his side.|
Arthur was born on May 18, 1921 in Weehawken, New Jersey to Charles R. Heitzman and Mildred E. Lynch Heitzman. He is preceded in death by his parents and two brothers, Robert J. Heitzman and Charles R. Heitzman, Jr.
Arthur's childhood was spent in Union City and then Cliffside Park, NJ, where he graduated high school, and met his future wife, Lucille von Dohren. He earned a scholarship to attend General Motors Institute majoring in Industrial Engineering. After graduation, he enlisted in the US Navy, serving in active duty for two years in the Pacific fleet as a navigator during World War II with the rank of Lieutenant (jg). Arthur's sea adventures continued with a year as a Merchant Marine officer.
Pursuing a consuming fascination with photography that began in childhood, Arthur attended the School of Modern Photography in New York City in 1948, which led to apprenticeships with several prestigious photographers. Arthur and Lucille married in 1948 and the following year opened Arthur Heitzman Photography in Cliffside Park. In 1959, Arthur and his family moved to Houston to join Gittings, Inc., a premier portrait photography firm. He became Chief Photographer by 1965 and retired in 1986 as Senior Vice President and Director of Photography. Arthur was acclaimed as "the dean of fine photographic portraiture", traveling the world photographing many subjects including a number of celebrities and dignitaries. As a member of the Professional Photographers of America he earned merits for his portraits and for teaching portraiture to others, while earning PPA degrees of Master of Photography and Photographic Craftsman. Arthur was a member of many other local, national, and international photographic organizations including the elite Cameracraftsmen of America.
A lifelong passion for music led Arthur to amass an extensive collection of classical music recordings and to sing with the Houston Symphony Chorus for 34 years. He was a student of the piano for most of his life. Arthur and Lucille regularly attended symphony, opera, and ballet performances in Houston.
Gardening brought Arthur much joy, especially in sharing the beauty of his rose garden with others.
Arthur was kind, grateful, and the perfect gentleman. He had a contagious laugh that showed his love of life and its adventures. He was a real "people person", enjoying meeting new people and conversing with others. His gracious spirit showed through to the end.
Arthur is survived by his wife of almost 65 years, Lucille; son Eric Heitzman and his wife, Anita, of College Station; daughter Laura Marlowe and her husband, Michael, of Allen; and daughter Lisa Mitschke and her husband, Greg, of Katy. Surviving grandchildren are Karin Heitzman Peters, Drew Mitschke, Emily Mitschke, Miranda Marlowe, and Meredith Marlowe, and great-granddaughter Morgan Peters.
Arthur's family wishes to extend their sincere appreciation to those caregivers who have served him over the past four years, particularly the staff of Evergreen Cottages for their exceptionally compassionate care in Arthur's final days.
A memorial service at Waltrip Funeral Home at 2:00pm on Thursday, July 25 will follow a private committal at Woodlawn Cemetery.
Memorial contributions may be made to Guardian Angels Medical Service Dogs, (www.medicalservicedogs.com)
Published in Houston Chronicle on July 21, 2013