[An appreciation for someone whose passing went unnoted by the fan press at the time,]
By David K.M. Klaus: Steven M. Frischer, just Steve Frischer to his friends (1955-2014), St. Louis, Mo. Heart attack. Attended his first convention, St. Louiscon, in 1969. He once said he could be remembered as the 13-year-old in a red baseball cap who bothered Harlan Ellison by following him around the convention and continually asking Star Trek questions. He hitchhiked to L.A.Con in Los Angeles in 1972, then from there hitchhiked north to Guerneville, California to meet Robert Anton Wilson, who was very down on his luck in that part of his life. Steve bought groceries for Wilson’s family contributing to their survival in a small part until Illuminatus! finally sold, launching Wilson’s career as a novelist. Hitchhiked to TorCon in Toronto in 1973, said the Royal York was the nicest, friendliest hotel he’d ever seen. When people with no rooms slept on the chairs in the hotel lobby, they were gently awakened around ten a.m. and offered tea at no cost, courtesy of the hotel. Actually rode in a friend’s car to and from MidAmeriCon in Kansas City in 1976, no hitchhiking needed. Member of the Ozark Science Fiction Association (OSFA), the Graphic Fantasy and Science Fiction Society of St. Louis (GRAFAN), the St. Louis Science Fiction Society. Regular attendee at Archon, St. Louis’ local convention for many, many years as well as one day mini-cons hosted by GRAFAN in the mid-’70s. Active member of the Church of All Worlds.
Open, friendly, found and welcomed new members for each of the groups he was in. Son of two Buchenwald survivors, what they survived darkened his life. He eventually married and had a daughter, Gidget Frischer, to whom he was devoted and close both before and after he and her mother Jodie divorced. Steve was intelligent, both school- and self- educated, learned enough kenpo karate to stop a mugging attack by three men on him, then ran before they could recover from the shock of the short, skinny Jewish guy kicking one of them to the ground. Enormously well-read in all forms of sf, loved reading Heinlein over and over, as well as del Rey, de Camp, Blish, Tolkien, Dickson, Anderson, Niven, and so many beyond counting. Original Star Trek too, of course.
Gidget had to break down the door to his apartment, too late to save him, but he now has a grandchild even though they will never meet. His ashes were scattered at the base of trees planted in his honor in the same cemetery where his parents were laid to rest.