Ski legend Herbert Schneider dead at 92
US Ski Hall of Fame skier, Herbert Schneider, a former owner of Cranmore in New Hampshire, died Sunday (June 10) at age 92.
He had been in failing health for several months battling a weak heart. He was the son of Hannes Schneider, known as the father of modern skiing.
His son Christopher is quoted in the Conway Daily saying, “Dad was an iconic figure in the valley and who he was permeated our private lives as well but in a very positive way. ... We never had a babysitter in the winter. We had ski instructors.”
A bronze star winner while serving with the 10th Mountain Division during World War II for action while on patrol in the Appennines in Italy in April 1945.
Other decorations have included being named to the U.S. Ski Hall of Fame in 1992, receiving the New England Ski Museum's Spirit of Skiing Award in 2009, being made an honorary lifetime member of PSIA and of the Ski Club Arlberg of St. Anton, Austria, in 2010.
Schneider oversaw the expansion of the Eastern Slope Ski Club's Junior Program at Cranmore. Among legions of young skiers from the program were such future Olympians as Tyler and Terry Palmer and David Currier, all of the 1972 U.S. Ski Team; Abbi Fisher of the 1976 and 1980 Olympic squads; and current U.S. Ski Team member and 2010 Olympian Leanne Smith.
Tyler Palmer said: “He was kind of like the 'Godfather of Skiing' as far as I was concerned. When I was a kid, we skied every day at Cranmore. My mother would pick us up at John Fuller School and we'd run like the devil to get on the Skimobile and up Cranmore to get some runs in before it got dark. Herbert would let us ski for free. He created a great life for my brother and I in skiing. I got to appreciate him a lot more when I got to go to Europe and St. Anton to race — he was my connection to that world from the start. He was so calm, and placid. He had a very good perspective on the valley and the sport. I absolutely appreciate everything he did for me, the sport and the town — he covered it all.”
Visiting hours for friends to pay respects to Schneider will be held at Furber and White Funeral Home in North Conway Thursday from 5 to 8 p.m. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held at Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church at 11 a.m. Friday, followed by a private family burial. A public celebration of Schneider's life is set for the Eating House/Zip's Pub at Cranmore Friday from 1:30 to 5 p.m.