Edward Tepper Shiffer, a resident of Scarsdale for 55 years, died Sept. 20 in New Rochelle after a brief illness. He was 92.
Born June 15, 1929, he was the only child of George and Elizabeth Shiffer. He grew up in Washington, D.C., and worked in his father’s furniture store when he wasn’t studying or hanging around the pool hall. He attended Yale University as an undergraduate and graduate student, earning a master’s degree in architecture in 1953. He counted Le Corbusier, Buckminster Fuller and Frank Lloyd Wright among his influences as he tapped into the post-war idealism about lifting up society through design. Along the way, he met a Bronx girl named Marion Shein on a blind date arranged by his college roommate. She was 16, he was 19, and after a declaration of love on a hill in New Haven, Connecticut, they knew they were “made for each other,” according to his family.
A few years later the couple returned to Europe where Edward was serving in the U.S. Army designing civil infrastructure projects in war-ravaged West Germany. After his discharge, they moved to California for the start of Mr. Shiffer’s architecture career. In 1964, they moved to Scarsdale, where they raised their children, held “legendary” New Year’s Eve parties and remained on Lee Road until 2019.
Mr. Shiffer retired from his firm, SBLM, in the mid-2000s, leaving an architectural legacy on Manhattan’s skyline and across the country.
His passion for sailing frequently went overboard, his family said. His first overnight cruise required the Coast Guard to rescue him and two young sons from an uninhabited island. In 1980, he sailed a 30-foot boat from New York to Bermuda and arrived with his crew (his family) intact.
Mr. Shiffer’s relatives said he leaves “a wonderful legacy of family and friends, whose lives he enriched throughout his own remarkable journey” as a husband, father and grandfather, an architect, a sailor, a watercolor painter, a devotee of theater, opera, music and literature. They said he was “someone always eager to raise a glass and celebrate the good things in life.”
Mr. Shiffer is survived by his wife of 70 years, Marion, of New Rochelle; sons Michael (Amy Silberkleit) of Mount Vernon, New York; Alexander (Sharon Richman) of Napanoch, New York; and James (Kirsten Delegard) of Minneapolis, Minnesota; and six grandchildren, Isis Shiffer, Elijah Shiffer, Jasmine Shiffer, Violet Shiffer, Annika Shiffer-Delegard and Malachi Shiffer-Delegard.
A celebration of life will be held later.