Frederick W. Ritz
1934 - 2019
Obituary of Frederick W. Ritz
Frederick W. Ritz, a lifelong resident of Bridgehampton, died peacefully from complications of a stroke on July 18, 2019 at the Kanas Center for Hospice Care, Westhampton Beach, NY. Fred was born on June 28, 1934 in Southampton, NY to Dr. Frederick W. and Eva Hildreth Ritz. He was pre-deceased by his brother, Robert E. Ritz.
Fred attended Bridgehampton School and graduated from Paul Smith’s College. He then pursued his B.S. degree from the New York State College of Forestry in Syracuse, NY. Upon graduation, he attended Naval Officers Candidate School in Newport, RI and served in the US Navy as a Gunnery Officer on the Fletcher-class destroyer USS Rooks in the Atlantic and Mediterranean for 3 ½ years.
Returning to Bridgehampton, Fred married Evelyn (Cissy) Bradford of East Hampton, NY. He started Fred Ritz Tree Service which he operated for a number of years before purchasing a local insurance agency in Bridgehampton to be later named the Ritz Agency. The Ritz Agency in later years merged with Dayton & Osborne of East Hampton to form Dayton, Ritz & Osborne Insurance. His son, Fred, is a principal.
For many years, Fred was a volunteer for the Bridgehampton Ambulance Corps. He was an active member of the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church where early on he sang with the choir and later served as Deacon and Trustee. He was a board member of the Nature Conservancy and served on the board of governors of the Bridgehampton Club.
Music was a very important part of Fred’s life and he could play just about any instrument by ear. Fred spent his lifetime playing the piano in the living room of his childhood home. He was a member of the Hamptons Barbershop Chorus Chapter and sang in a Barbershop Quartet. The Sagg Swamp Preserve and the Beebe Windmill across the street from his home were favorite spots for Fred and his childhood friends. Their inscriptions can still be seen inside the windmill to the delight of his grandchildren.
Fred loved everything outdoors and enjoyed golf, skiing, ice skating, and boating. He was revered by all as a consummate gentleman and gracious sportsman. He spent many years returning to the Adirondacks as a devoted alumnus of Paul Smith’s college. He was a member of the Bridgehampton Club, Sag Harbor Yacht Club and a former member of the Coral Beach Club in Bermuda.
Fred could fix just about anything, and his grandchildren fondly remember riding with him on his John Deere tractor in the field, sitting on the bench with him at the piano, spending hours in the workshop working on a project, or walking in the woods or on the beach. His patience, love, and infectious sense of humor will always be remembered as well as his innate curiosity and love of nature.
Fred is remembered by family and friends as an integral member and trusted friend of the Bridgehampton community. His genuine kindness, warm character, generosity, and quick wit will be missed.
Fred is survived by his wife, Cissy; daughter and son-in-law Caroleigh and Win Evarts of New Canaan, CT and their three children, Nick, Eliza, and Sam; his son Fred and daughter-in-law Samone of Water Mill, NY and their three children, Kaley, Fred, and Sarah.
A service to celebrate Fred’s life will be held on August 2, 2019 at 2pm at the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church. A private family burial service was held on July 21, 2019 at the Edgewood Cemetery in Bridgehampton. Pastor Peter Sulyok of the Bridgehampton Presbyterian Church presided.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Bridgehampton Ambulance Corps, PO Box 1280, Bridgehampton, NY 11932 and The Nature Conservancy, re: Sagg Swamp Preserve, 142 East Hampton Sag Harbor Turnpike, East Hampton, NY 11937.To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of Frederick Ritz, please visit Tribute Store