The Obit For A.D. Suesdorf


Friday, January 23, 2009

Adolph Suehsdorf III Adolph Suehsdorf III, editorial director for over 20 years at the NY-based publishing house Ridge Press, died of heart failure on December 20, 2008.

He was 91 and had been a long-time resident of Sonoma, CA. Born December 26, 1916, Adie was the only child of Adolph Suehsdorf Jr. and Edna Wulp.

He attended College High School in Upper Montclair, NJ, before graduating with a BA in English from Princeton University in 1938. The country was still in the grip of the Depression, and the young graduate drove across the country looking for newspaper work before landing a job as a reporter at the San Francisco Chronicle where he remained until the country entered the war.

Adie served in Burma with the Office of War Information, a psychological warfare team under the command of General Joseph Stillwell. In 1945 he joined the U.S. Observer Mission in Yenan, China where he had occasion to meet Zhou En-lai. In a 1976 op-ed piece for the New York Times he described Zhou as a man "comfortably himself" who "...never tried to blow the cloak from your shoulders."

After the war, Adie moved to New York City where he was staff writer for This Week magazine and editor at Saga, a men's adventure magazine. From 1954 to 1958 he edited the Ford Foundation's annual report before arriving at Ridge Press where he worked until his retirement in 1979.

Among the many books he shepherded to publication were: Edward Steichen's Family of Man, John Hammond on Record (the jazz impresario's autobiography), and House of Bondage (a 1966 collection of photographs by a young black South African depicting life under apartheid.)

Adie authored three books: The Great American Baseball Scrapbook, The Complete Book of Cats, and How to Invest Safely and for Profit. He contributed to Time Inc.'s December 7, the First 30 Hours and wrote articles for, among others, The New Yorker, National Geographic, Readers Digest, The American Scholar.

A specialist in baseball history, he contributed articles to The National Pastime, the Baseball Research Journal, Baseball History, Total Baseball, as well as publications of the Society for American Baseball Research. In 1994 he received SABR's distinguished service award.

Throughout his life, Adie was active in a wide range of civic affairs. He was president of the Briarcliff Manor volunteer fire department and, later, of the Trinity School Parent Association. He was a Little League manager and assiduous class agent for Princeton.

After he retired to Southbury, Ct., he became an Emergency Medical Technician, a CPR instructor and volunteer ambulance driver. Upon moving to California and discovering his EMT qualification wouldn't be recognized, he enlisted as a respite worker with Valley of the Moon Hospice.

For years he was an indefatigable fundraiser and board member for El Nido, a teen center for Latino youth in Sonoma. Adie's wife of 45 years, Betty Margaret Brogan, died in 1995, and his daughter Sharon S. Chandler, a San Francisco attorney, died last February.

He is survived by his friend and companion Wendy Meeker, son David, daughter-in-law Janet, and grandchildren McKinley and Ted.

A memorial service will be held on January 31, 2009 at 11:00 am at Duggan's Mission Chapel, 525 West Napa Street, Sonoma, CA.

In lieu of flowers the family has requested contributions be made in Adie's name to one of the following charities: Wildlife Fawn Rescue, The Nature Conservancy, or Doctors Without Borders.