Claude M. Maer, Jr, W0IC SK November 16, 2021, Age 102

Discussion in 'Silent Keys / Friends Remembered' started by K2HAT, Nov 22, 2021.

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  1. K2HAT

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    Claude M. Maer, Jr, W0IC SK


    Claude McCabe Maer Jr. passed away on November 16, 2021, at the age of 102 in Denver. He was born June 10, 1919, in Fort Worth, Texas to Claude McCabe Maer Sr. and Hillery (Moseley) Maer, grew up in Fort Worth, and was a great grandson of James Robertson Couts, a pioneer cattleman and banker of Weatherford, Texas.

    He graduated with distinction from Rice University (Phi Beta Kappa) in 1940. He served during World War II in the Army Air Corps, where he attained the rank of Captain. He was stationed in various locales, including the Azores. He remained in the Army Reserve and attained the rank of Major. After his wartime service, Claude attended Yale Law School's two-year accelerated program, graduating in 1948.

    In 1943, Claude married Cynthia Edrington Symes, the daughter of then U.S. District Court Judge J. Foster Symes. There were three children from the marriage: Cynthia Crockett (Tom), Claudia von Wilpert (Paul), Foster (J. Foster Symes) Maer (Marcella). The marriage ended in divorce. In 1971, Claude married Anne Waring White who passed away in 2012.

    Following law school, Claude joined the new law firm of Holland and Hart as its 7th lawyer, for the munificent salary of $150 per month. He became an assistant to Stephen Hart as a tax lawyer and followed that branch of the law during his 60+ year career. Claude was cited as a "Super Lawyer " in the 1971 book "The Superlawyers" by Joseph C. Goulden (in which that term was invented). He later became a partner in Baker and Hostetler's Denver office, then joined Dufford, Brown, Furgason & Robb and, finally, joined Moye White LLC until his retirement.

    During his career, Claude spent considerable time in Washington, DC working on legislative matters for The American National Cattlemen's Association and for the Portland cement industry. He testified several times before the Ways and Means Committee of the U. S. House of Representatives (whose Chief of Staff once had Claude tracked down on the Aspen Mountain ski slopes to ask him to fly to Washington to testify).

    One of Claude's major interests in the law was the Colorado Corporation Code. He served as Chairman of its Revision Committee for 30 years and, with a talented team of Colorado business lawyers, managed to keep Colorado in the forefront of corporate law. He also served for a few years on the Code's Revision Committee of the American Bar Association.

    Claude was active in Denver's business and social circles. He served as President and Life Member of The Denver Club and was a member of The University Club for several years. He started skiing with his family in 1953 and was a member and President of the Colorado Arlberg Club. He served on the Boards of Directors of The Aspen Skiing Corp for 10 years and of the Humphreys Foundation from 1970 until his death. He was also a member of the Cactus Club and the Denver Country Club. An enthusiastic contract bridge player, he was a member of the American Contract Bridge League.

    Claude's longtime hobby was amateur radio. He obtained his first federal license in 1932 at age 12, which he held for over 80 years. In the 1950's he was elected Director for the American Radio Relay League's Rocky Mountain Division. One of his principal achievements was conducting a two-way contact with another amateur station in Puerto Rico by reflecting radio signals off the moon. He also received and recorded radio signals from the Russian Sputnik the day of its launch on October 4, 1958.

    Claude learned to fly in 1948 and often used his plane to fly around the Rocky Mountain area to the ranches and towns to meet with clients on tax matters and, by landing at nearby airstrips or on the ranch itself, was able to save everyone's time.

    Claude loved books, poetry, people, parties, bridge, and jokes. He took several sea cruises including one traversing the Panama Canal. (His first "cruise" was ordered by the U. S. Army Air Corps on a troop ship to the Azores). He had innumerable friends over the years, particularly Mimi Chenoweth, with whom he was blessed to enjoy the last few years of their lives.

    Claude's children and friends remember him fondly as adventurous, charming, curious, fun-loving, generous, and knowledgeable about so much - and always the smartest (and handsomest!) guy in the room. He recited poetry and relished science, history, travel, movies, jokes, the game Malarky and the Colorado mountains throughout his long life. At 88, he trekked to rural Botswana with family to visit his granddaughter in the Peace Corps. At 90, he was still skiing.

    Claude is survived by his children and their spouses, his grandchildren Tim, Marni, Ward, Richard, Chris, Jason, Ben and Kyle, his great-grandchildren Brandon, Brianna, Autumn and Lillian, and his stepsons Edward (Ted) and James (Jamie) White. He is survived as well by his indispensable personal assistant for decades, Pam McBride, to whom Claude's family owes a special debt of gratitude.

    A January 2022 celebration of Claude's life is being planned. Donations in his memory may be made to Colorado Public Radio.

    Published by Denver Post on Nov. 21, 2021.
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