FitzGERALD DAVID TARRANT FitzGERALD Chief Purser of the S.S. United States March 1, 1924 - December 2, 2014 David T. FitzGerald died on Tuesday in Potomac, Maryland following an illness of several months. Born in Washington, D.C., he received his education from Devitt Prep School, George Washington University and American University. But his real education, and real love, was the sea. David joined the Merchant Marines in World War II and served in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters aboard various cargo ships. After the war he was assigned to the S.S. America, and in 1952 to the SS United States. He served aboard the world's fastest passenger ship from its record breaking maiden voyage to its last cruise in 1969. In 1971 David joined Commodore Cruise Lines and became Chief Purser of the M.S. Boheme until his retirement in 1986. A successful businessman, David was President of Inter Island Shipping and the Riedel Corporation, and a Director of the Bank of Maryland and Old South Shipping. He and his beloved wife of 37 years, Margaretha (Riedel), enjoyed lifelong interests in travel and antiquing. They were longtime residents of Weehawken, N.J. During his life David garnered the respect of all and lived a Christian life. Truly a gentleman rarely seen today. We mourn his passing. David is predeceased by his wife, his mother and father, Alice and James FitzGerald of Chevy Chase,and his brother, Jay FitzGerald of Potomac. His father, Jim FitzGerald, was a sports editor with The Washington Post and the information director for the Department of Labor. His uncle, Jack FitzGerald, was a turf writer in New York in the 20s and 30s, and gained notoriety for coining the phrase "The Big Apple." His brother, Jay FitzGerald, was a lawyer and banker in Maryland. David is survived by eight nieces and nephews, Cindy FitzGerald, Melanie Celenza, Mary Ellen (Toot) Greene, David FitzGerald, Brian FitzGerald, Andy FitzGerald, Clay FitzGerald and Matty FitzGerald;18 grandnieces and grandnephews, one great- grandniece. He will also be missed by his loyal dog, Scottie. There will be a private graveside service at Parkwood Cemetery, Baltimore. Condolences may be expressed at [email protected]
Those who wish may make contributions in David's memory to the SS United States Conservancy, PO Box 32115, Washington, DC 20007 or the US Merchant Marine Veterans of WWII, East Coast Chapter, 1328 N. Relyea Avenue, Charleston, SC 29412.There will be a private graveside service at Parkwood Cemetery, Baltimore. Condolences may be expressed at [email protected]
Those who wish may make contributions in David's memory to the SS United States Conservancy, PO Box 32115, Washington, DC 20007 or the US Merchant Marine Veterans of WWII, East Coast Chapter, 1328 N. Relyea Avenue, Charleston, SC 29412.
Published by The Washington Post on Dec. 12, 2014.