HALPERT--Edward R., Died September 29 in New York City of complications of Parkinson's Disease. He was 80 years old. Gracious, competent, sensible, generous and kind, Ed had a long and notably happy life, enriched by his extraordinary gift for friendship and by his devotion to his wife and to their children and grandchildren, sources of enormous pride and joy to him. An avid sailor, he grew up in Kings Point, learning to sail when he was seven years old and spending much time as a teenager sailing and racing on Long Island Sound. After earning a BA from Bates College and MBA from the Harvard Business School, he served for three years as an officer in the US Army Finance Corps and embarked on a career that culminated in founding, with his colleague Ira Sahlman, a chain of retail fabric stores and a highly successful textile converting business, the Tussah Company. He retired in 1992 to be able to spend more time travelling during school vacations with his wife, Evy, then Head of the Brearley School, and to pursue a vast array of shared interests and experiences among them tennis and sailing with family and friends, theater, opera, ballet, museum-going and chamber music (he began studying the cello in his late twenties and attained a modest level of competence which enabled him to enjoy playing slow movements of Mozart and Beethoven trios and quartets with far more accomplished amateurs). He was a Fellow for Life of the Metropolitan Museum (thanks to a gift his family made to the Costume Institute in memory of his father, the US manufacturer for Jacques Fath), and early in his career he was President of the Wiltwyck School for Boys, a residential treatment center for troubled, delinquent, court-referred teenagers. He later served on the Board of the National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression (now renamed the Brain and Behavior Research Foundation) and on the Board of Prep for Prep, an academic program which prepares minority students for admission to independent schools. He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Evelyn J. Halpert, their two sons, James J. Halpert of Washington, DC and David C. Halpert of Singapore, and four grandsons, Sam, Daniel, Rustam and Ramsey, all of whom miss him terribly. A celebration in his memory will be held at the Century Association, 7 West 43rd St, at 5:30pm on Thursday, October 17. In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the International Rescue Committee.
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Published by New York Times on Oct. 6, 2013.