Obituaries – 05-08-2013

Capt. Julian Manuel Fernandez

Capt. Julian Manuel Fernandez, of Anna Maria and formerly of Miami and Tampa, died April 26. He was born Oct. 31, 1922, in Arvada, Colo., and grew up in Tampa, the son of the late Jose and Nicolasa Fernandez.

Capt. Fernandez loved Anna Maria, where he had been visiting since an infant with his family. He reminisced about crossing to the island by ferry. The family initially came with a tent before vacation homes were built. When he married, he brought his bride to honeymoon in Anna Maria.

He retired from a 50-year career as a merchant seaman in 1992 to fulfill his dream of returning to the island as a fulltime resident.

He graduated in 1940 from Hillsborough High School in Tampa and then went to U.S. Maritime Service Officer Candidate School in New London, Conn.

During WWII, he saw duty in both the Atlantic and Pacific theaters. He served in all deck capacities in the U.S. Merchant Marine and survived having two of his ships torpedoed.

He graduated as ensign with a third mate unlimited ocean license in 1944. He attended various schools to prepare for U.S. Coast Guard examinations to upgrade his license to second mate, chief mate and master, all oceans unlimited. In 1945, at age 22, he became the youngest captain for Waterman Steamship Corp. of Mobile, Ala.

In 1954 he was appointed pilot for the Port of Miami, then known as the Miami Bar Pilots. Under his leadership, it became the Biscayne Bay Pilots. He served as chairman from 1960 until retirement in 1980, at which time, he held 10 master’s licenses with first class pilot endorsement from Miami.

In 1955, he was appointed by Gov. Leroy Collins to the local Florida Board of Pilot Commissioners and served until the state board was created by the Legislature. He was appointed by Gov. Reuben Askew as as president and served until 1980.

He then served as chief of cruise operations for the Port of Miami and International Marine Consultant, assisting in port creation in the Caribbean, West Indies and the Middle East. He chaired numerous conventions and seminars all over the world on piloting and port related matters. He consulted with Disney Corp. in the creation of its cruise line. He also opened the South American market for an international company that built gantry cranes, which brought new industry and and economic boosts to smaller ports.

He also was a member of the Society of Naval Architects and Engineers; The Propeller Club, Port of Miami; president of OpSail Miami; director of the Dade Marine Institute; vice president, Marine Council; member American Pilots Association; president and chairman of the Florida Maritime Museum, Council of American Master Mariners; and served on the board of directors of Seaman’s International Park, Miami.

He was a member of the Rotary Club of Miami and, as a Mason, a 69-year member of the Universal Lodge #178, F.& A.M, Tampa. He was 32 Degree, Scottish Rite, Miami, and Mahi Shrine Temple (Ambassador Corps), Miami.

While he was a man of great accomplishments, his greatest legacy is his unfailing graciousness, generosity and loyalty. He was a patron of the arts, a raconteur and a true Renaissance man, wrote his sister, Maria Fernandez.

Services were May 3 in Tampa. Officers of the Universal Lodge #178, F&AM, Tampa, conducted the traditional farewell service.

His remains will be placed at the Neptune Society of Miami Memorial Reef off the coast of Florida.

Memorial donations may be made to the Shriners Hospital for Children, 12502 USF Pine Drive, Tampa FL 33612, or the charity of one’s choice.

Capt. Fernandez is survived by his wife of 53 years, Carolyn Davis; nieces and nephews Carroll, Julia and Jennifer Sloan; and his beloved pets, Bubba, Olivia and Sammy. He also leaves many friends and his caregivers, who became dear friends and companions.


Charles Robert “Bob” Graeber

Charles Robert “Bob” Graeber, 87, chief warrant officer, U.S. Army, retired, died April 24. He is a former resident of Anna Maria, having lived aboard his boat at Galati Marine for some 10 years.

He served honorably in the U.S. Army for 30 years, including during World War II and two tours in Vietnam. He was awarded the Bronze Star Medal, Air Medal and Meritorious Service Medal.

Visitation and services were May 1 in San Antonio, Texas. Interment was held with honors at Fort Sam Houston National Cemetery. Condolences may be made online at

Mr. Graeber is survived by his son, Robert Douglas; daughter Charlene and husband Larry Green of Bradenton; granddaughter Dorothy Christine Rowan and her partner C.J. Dambria; grandson Robert David and wife Amber; great-grandchildren, Kaiya Rei, Jayce, Aaron Austin and Holly Alfrey.


Marion ‘Sam’ Bell

Marion “Sam” Bell, 75, died May 2 after a long battle with cancer. He was a native of Cortez, born Sept. 11, 1939, the youngest son of the late Manly and Floy Bell.

He was a descendant of some of the early settlers, the Taylor and Bell families, of Cortez,.

He was a 1957 graduate of Manatee County High School, and was a graduate from the charter class of both Manatee Junior College and the University of South Florida-Tampa. He was a Freemason, a 32nd Degree Scottish Rite Mason and a Shriner.

His passions were his family and the village of Cortez. His interests included classical music, reading, travel, volunteering at the Florida Maritime Museum and for other causes, and his many friends. He will be remembered by his sense of humor, his willingness to help others and his wit.

His career consisted of work at Honeywell Aerospace, where he was production coordinator for the inertial guidance platform for the Gemini two-man space program. He then began a career marketing consumer products, from paper to toiletries, for several companies. During the 14 years prior to his retirement, he helped introduce self-testing of blood glucose to the American market.

Services were private. Brown & Sons Funeral Homes & Crematory 26th Street Chapel was in charge of arrangements. Memorial donations may be made to Tidewell Hospice or Cortez Village Historical Society. Condolences may be made online at

Mr. Bell is survived by his wife of almost 50 years, Kathleen Glidden; sons Kevin Bell of New Port Richey and Nathaniel J. of Tampa; grandsons Nathaniel G., Sebastian and Keaton C.; and brother Ronald T. and wife Rosa Lee of Greensboro, N.C.


Harvey F. Schwallie

Harvey F. Schwallie, of Wellsfleet, Mass., and Holmes Beach, died in March 2013. He was born Nov. 23, 1935, in Cincinnati.

Mr. Schwallie graduated from Marietta College in 1958. He started a career in sales at National Blank Book Company in Holyoke. From there, his sales career took him to the Grumbacher Company. The height of his career was spent with Mont Blanc Writing Instruments, where he served as North American sales manager. He retired in 1996 to his home on Cape Cod.

Services were in Massachusetts. Arrangements were by Ryder Funeral Home of South Hadley, Mass. Memorial donations may be made in care of Dr. Robert Mayer, GI Cancer Research Fund, Dana Farber Contribution Services, 10 Brookline Place West, Sixth Floor, Brookline MA 02445, or a charity of choice .

Mr. Schwallie is survived by his wife of 54 years, Barbara; children Mark, John, Tia Schabot and Cho-Ae; and grandchildren Dylan, Madelynne, Lucas, Emilia, Theodora, Elizabeth Schabot, Nicole Schabot, Christopher Riel and Lexie Spellman.


Thomas Lee Snell

Thomas Lee Snell, 77, of Seffner and formerly a 40-year resident of the city of Anna Maria, died April 19.

Mr. Snell was a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corp. He was an accomplished horticulturist.

Arrangements were by Stowers Funeral Home,

Mr. Snell is survived by son Gary Grant and wife Debbie; daughters Lorelda and husband Mark McKinney, Sondra and husband Cameron Dakin and Cheryl Maddox; grandchildren Jason, Garrett, Grant, Ethan Dakin and Corynne McKinney; and great-grandson Owen Dakin.


Elizabeth ‘Liz’ Troutman

Elizabeth “Liz” Troutman, 84, longtime resident of Bradenton, died April 23 in San Ramon, Calif. She was born Dec. 5, 1928, in Maryland.

Mrs. Troutman graduated from the University of Maryland and taught high school English for 10 years before retiring to Florida.

Mrs. Troutman, or Liz as she was known, was active in community affairs in Sarasota and Bradenton for many years. She was a patron of the arts with a special love of opera, having served on the board of the Bradenton Opera Guild more than a decade. She was in charge of the guild’s Star Program, as well as editor of its Bel Canto newsletter.

She was made a lifetime honorary member of the Yale Club of Sarasota, serving many years as editor of its news journal, bluELInes. She was a longtime member of the Harvey Memorial Community Church in Bradenton Beach and was instrumental in the creation and installation of its stained-glass windows.

The family requests that memorial donations be made to Yale University or to the Sarasota Opera.

Mrs. Troutman is survived by sons David Jefferson of San Ramon, Calif., and Thomas Denson of Harpswell, Maine; and daughters Elizabeth Holmes of Marysville, Wash., and Karen Richards of Bradenton.

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