Van Heston Schwartz - Rochester

Van Heston Schwartz, 66, died Oct. 28, 2012, due to complications from Multiple Sclerosis. His body was cremated on Oct. 29, after living on this planet for 67 years.

Van was born in Davenport, Iowa, on Oct. 29, 1945, to Florence (Husted) and Earl Schwartz. During high school, he was active in many clubs and played saxophone and clarinet in orchestra and dance bands, earning a music scholarship to St. Ambrose College in Davenport. He later transferred to Harvard University and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in 1968. He married Carol Jacobs in 1966, and was blessed with a daughter, Robin. They later divorced. He and Terri Dugan married in 1983 in Rochester.

Van filled his young adult years with many experiences including running U.S. Senate races, marketing the Volunteer Army for the Pentagon, editing the Bettendorf (Iowa) News, and shoeing horses with the Amish. He sculpted portrait busts in clay while at Harvard, and was offered a Ford Foundation grant. He chose instead to pursue a career in finance, and worked at Goldman Sachs before returning to the Midwest. He retired on disability from his position as Bond Wholesaler for Dain Bosworth in 1986.

After being diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1980, he continued to work and pursue his newest hobbies of photography and writing poetry. He enjoyed dining at many of Rochester’s fine restaurants, meetings of the Investment Club and Poetry Group, rides in the country, and trips to the mall. As the disease progressed, Van spent his time at home, welcoming visits from family and friends.

He is survived by his wife, Terri Dugan; daughter, Robin Schwartz, Carol Jacobs and granddaughter, Amanda Matthews; in-laws, Holly (Dugan) and George Renner and Kim, Chuck, Rick Dugan and Al Sierra; and nieces and nephews, Nida Dieckmann, Michael German, John and Dan Renner, Rick Dugan, and all of their children; and many wonderful friends.

He was preceded in death by his parents, sister, Marie German Sierra, brother-in-law, Ray German, and niece, Rajean (German) Lowenstein.

Van’s memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 3, at Macken Funeral Home River Park Chapel in Rochester, with the Rev. Char Tarashanti officiating. A celebratory dinner will follow the service.

The family requests memorials to the MS Society, Rochester Public Library, Paws and Claws Humane Society or charity of your choice.

On-line condolences are welcome at