Friday, August 04, 2006

Otto Schwarz



Otto Schwarz passed away on August 3, 2006. Otto started the USS Houston Survivors Association and was a devoted and tireless worker. We owe him a debt of gratitude for all he did to make it "happen". Our love and condolences to his family and especially his wonderful wife, Trudy.
Otto's son, John, writes:
"The good Lord has finally led him to peace.

The Schwarz family is more thankful than sorrowful. Our father was afforded a good, long life. It was longer(at age 82) than would be expected for a man who not only survived the sinking of his ship, but three and a half years as a prisoner of war during WWII....

Otto Carl Schwarz was a good man and the best father a son could ever ask for.

His final resting place will be Arlington National Cemetery, following an approximate 4-6 week waiting period. I intend to inform everyone of the particulars as that time gets closer. My family and I offer welcome to those who would like to attend the services at Arlington.

I thank you all again from the bottom of my heart for your support and concern."

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

My father was aboard the U.S.S Pyro when Pearl Harbour was attacked in 1941, with the passing of your father and mine (1984) the world will never ever see their kind again.
God bless you all
Mike Jennings
Apple Valley, CA.

Anonymous said...

To Otto and the Houston Survivors,I owe a debt of gratitude for the tremendous heritage they shared with us all. I am better for it ... as we all are. God Bless them all. Vic Campbell.

Anonymous said...

Very sorry to hear of Otto's passing. I still have a book, "The Last Battle Station" that Otto autographed and sent me in 1983. I will treasure it always. I'm sure he will be sadly missed by many people.
Bruce Constable
HMAS Perth website.
www.spruso.com/perth.htm

Kiwiwriter said...

I am truly saddened to hear of Otto Schwarz's death. I was reading W.G. Winslow's book "The Ghost That Died At Sunda Strait" just yesterday, and I had in it the obituary for a Houston CPO who died in New Jersey in 2000. In the obituary, Schwarz was mentioned, and I thought, "I'd better get in touch with him now and get my book signed."

Too late. This morning I read of his death. It was surreal.

I hope he got to enjoy that long and happy life that Dick Winters hoped for his Easy Company of the 506th Parachute Infantry Regiment.

I am glad to know that Otto will be buried at Arlington...resting eternally alongside thousands of other American heroes.

Anonymous said...

My uncle was a true survivor, with all of his ill's compounded by his blindness, he refused to give up. He has gone on to join his shipmates but leaves behind an empty place for many. He is now and will continue to be the heart of the U.S.S. Houston Survivors Association. These dedicated family members will continue to keep the Houston and her crew alive for future generations. My thanks to all who have taken the time to send condolences and kind words. Continue to read the books and visit the Houston website. Doing this will guarentee that these brave men will continue to live on.

Barbara Walls (Niece of Otto Schwarz)

Anonymous said...

My uncle was a true survivor, with all of his ill's compounded by his blindness, he refused to give up. He has gone on to join his shipmates but leaves behind an empty place for many. He is now and will continue to be the heart of the U.S.S. Houston Survivors Association. These dedicated family members will continue to keep the Houston and her crew alive for future generations. My thanks to all who have taken the time to send condolences and kind words. Continue to read the books and visit the Houston website. Doing this will guarentee that these brave men will continue to live on.

Barbara Walls (Niece of Otto Schwarz)

Gianna said...

I am Otto's 3rd cousin. My name is Gianna Schwarz.I am 8 years old. I am sorry I never got to meet Otto before he died. Otto's father and my great grandfather Henry were brothers.I would like to learn about Otto more. And meet his wife.

Anonymous said...

I just finished reading "Ship of Ghosts, the Story of the USS Houston", by James Hornfischer. I was going to try to contact Mr. Schwarz to thank him for the sacrifices he and his brave crewmen made for his country, and instead learned that he passed away last August. My condolences are extended to his family and surviving shipmates.

"Home is the sailor home
from the sea, and the
hunter home from the hill."

Paul Kahn, Milltown, NJ

Anonymous said...

I recently finished reading "Ship of Ghosts" and was moved by the stories of heroism and perseverance in a way that was simply astonishing. As an active-duty Navy Lieutenant the book helped further stregthen my pride in the Navy and sharply reminded me of the sacrifices of the men who have gone before me.

I became excited when I learned that Mr. Schwarz actually lived in the same town as me, Union, NJ. I was planning on paying him a visit in uniform to pay my respects when I learned of his passing. I offer my deepest condolences to the family. To all members of the Houston, "fair winds and following seas".

LT Drew J. McCrossan, USN

Mrs. Perkins said...

Otto Schwarz was an incredible man. He would often visits my classes to share his experiences and my students and I adored him. Once my class was touring West Point and they wanted the students to shout "Go Army." My students loved Otto so much that refused, they said that they were representing the survivors of the USS Houston and so they wanted to shout "Go Navy!" And they did! God bless you, Otto. May you rest in peace.
Arleen Perkins
Grover Cleveland Middle School
Caldwell, NJ

Eric Lien said...

Serving on USS Houston with many of his shipmates a few years, and suffering off USS Houston a few years in tortuous prisoner camps, and for many decades back home keeping alive the memory of his shipmates, Otto makes me proud of America, the Navy, him, his wife Trudy, and others of his family. Truly, my brother, me and my sister are in his debt.

Miguel A. Castro said...

I had the pleasure of sitting next to Mrs. Schwarz on a flight back from Dallas yesterday, Aug. 14 2011. She tells an amazing story about a truly amazing group of men and after our conversation, I felt like I knew her husband. I recognized the patch on Mrs. Schwarz's jacket from historical readings I've come across. After Googling the Chief's name I came across this blog and am very happy and proud to see that he was honored at Arlington. Mrs. Schwarz says there are now only 17 remaining living survivors of the Houston. My conversations with the Chief's wife reconfirmed in my mind and heart why the call them "The Greatest Generation".

TahoeTeddy said...

I've been working my way thru 4 books about the USS Houston which my Dad's cousin (or uncle), Warrant Officer John A. Lafferty was killed in enemy action and missing. After reading Otto was only 17 at the time, I was hoping to contact him to see if he knew John. But like everyone else, I am truly sorry to hear of his passing before I had a chance to contact him. My condolences to his family. I'm sure he and the rest of the crew who died that day or after are having a good ole time up there in heaven. They deserve their rewards for such bravery and valiant efforts that they made on the USS Houston. Rest in peace guys!!

Mike Lakat said...

John,

Just found this blog today (27 JUL 2016), I came to know your Father through my Father who was also a member of the AXPWs Garden State Chapter 1. He was a waist gunner on a B-17G stationed in Italy and was shot down, wounded, and became a "guest" of the Reich for 18 months.

I was inspired by both men -- for their courage, service, sacrifice, love of Country, and devotion to their Brothers in arms. My Father passed in JAN 2008, and i am sure that your Dad and mine are once again together.

Mike Lakat
Ringoes NJ
m_lakat@hotmail.com