Robert Strother Swartz

Robert Strother Swartz

Died November 11, 1967

Bob was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1964 and was an accomplished and serious singer: Freshman Glee Club, Apollo Glee Club, Yale Glee Club, Yale Alley Cats (pitch pipe) and Whiffenpoofs.

He prepared at Shaker Heights High School in Shaker Heights, Ohio, and majored in classics at Yale.

Bob passed away on November 11, 1967.

Ralph Protsik remembers:
Talented musician, first-rate tenor, funny funny man, dear friend. We loved him then and still do. Passed but not forgotten, our ‘Mudes.

Darwin Gillett remembers:
I knew Bob from singing and touring in the Yale Glee Club together. He was one of those people who always seemed up, so it was a pleasure to be in his company. He died so young. What would the rest of his life have looked like?

Kenneth Bardach remembers:
I remember Bob “Bermuda” Swartz from our time together as first tenors in the ’65 Whiffenpoofs. Bob had a marvelous mind and soul for the music; he learned the music more rapidly than most, and he worked assiduously to perform each piece meticulously. He often kept the rest of the tenors on pitch by singing on the upper edge of the note. But, mostly, I member Bob for his dry wit, and his mature influence on the group. I cannot recall him ever arriving late for an engagement or drinking alcohol in excess. And his legacy: a large bound scrap book he assembled and gave to each Whiff with clippings and other memorabilia for our year of singing together as the Whiffs of 1965. He left us soon after graduation. What a sad moment when I heard about his passing. What a loss. We have missed you, Bermuda.

C. Daniel Bergfeld remembers:
Remembering Bob Swartz (Bermuda-Swartz’ = Whiff name).
In our Whiffenpoof group, ‘Mudes’ was the quiet one in our noisy clan. But he would occasionally surprise in remarkable ways.
One such occasion was a “swell” gig we sang at the Waldorf in NYC, a white tie affair. Following our engagement we were walking through the main hotel lobby, filled with New York sophisticates. Mudes started running across the lobby, dove forward, took flight, and skidded across the lobby on his chest like a penguin. The expressions on those sophisticated faces were a delight to behold. Mudes got up, bowed, and continued talking to the Park Avenue exit. We were roaring with laughter.
It was just another day in the life of an entertainer.