Hedy Schnitzer escaped Nazis, led independent life in Riverdale


Hedy Schnitzer passed away at Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital surrounded by immediate family members on Oct. 15 from a stroke that occurred the prior night while she was asleep. She was 92, living alone, fiercely independent, mentally sharp and self-sufficient until her last day.

She was born in Munich, Germany in 1923 and lived there until 1935, when her father moved the family to Israel to escape the Nazis. In 1937, her family moved to New York, where she met her husband, Bernard, and was married in 1948. In 1955, they moved to Riverdale and the Linden House (3001 Henry Hudson Parkway), where their son, Jamie, was born.

During the next several years she raised her son, ran the household, helped with her husband’s dental laboratory business, traveled throughout Europe, baked and encouraged her son to become a tennis player on the Linden House tennis court. She enjoyed watching him play through the windows of her apartment.

After her husband died in 1990, she remained in the Linden House and continued to cultivate an expanding network of neighbors over many years. Her sister, Laura Lowy (who survives her), lived in the same apartment building and remained very close to Ms. Schnitzer for nearly 60 years. Besides enjoying time with her family, friends and neighbors, Ms. Schnitzer liked many aspects of the area including Wave Hill, the New York Botanical Gardens, Henry Hudson Park, and the Linden House Book Club, which she frequented.

In addition to her son and sister, she is survived by two grandchildren, Tali and Adam, and two nephews, David and Lloyd Lowy. 

Services were held at the Riverdale Temple on Oct. 18 and the internment was at Mt. Hope Cemetery in Hastings-on-the–Hudson, New York.

Donations in Ms. Schnitzer’s memory may be made to the Riverdale Temple or the National Holocaust Museum.

Hedy Schnitzer,