James Francis “Tater” Schauber of Worton, MD, passed away on Thursday, September 19, 2019, at University of Maryland Shore Medical Center in Easton. He was 81.
Born on August 14, 1938, he was the son of the late Richard F. and Frances Woodall Schauber. He graduated from Chestertown High School, class of 1956, and served for three years in the United States Marine Corps.
Tater traveled a varied path through life and always with a good spirit. A lifelong entrepreneur, Tater owned and operated a tractor trailer, making runs from coast to coast. He was a partner with his brother Eggy in The Chestertown Brick Company.
Probably most notably, Tater and Ginger Usilton operated The Blue Bird Tavern in Chestertown. Schauber supported club lacrosse and sponsored the famous Blue Bird team.
Denny Seip, a long time Kent County High School teacher and lacrosse coach, remembers the invaluable role that Schauber played in the 2002 inauguration of the Eastern Shore Summer Lacrosse league and the Blue Bird team.
“Ginger and Tater supported us tremendously,” Seip recalled. “The team would never have happened if they hadn’t been there for us.”
“We never lost a game in eight years,” Seip reminisced.
Seip described Tater and Ginger’s sponsorship of countless fundraisers, as well as providing seed money for the weekend youth lacrosse clinics.
Seip recounted the team’s first trip to Lake Placid, NY to participate in the East Coast summer lacrosse tournament.
“Tater and Ginger traveled with us and brought their grandkids with them to Lake Placid.”
Many original Blue Bird players plan to attend Tater’s service.
Schauber was an active member of the Chestertown Elks Lodges, #2474 where he was Past Exalted Ruler and served for over 25 years as secretary.
“He was a fun-loving guy who was very involved in the Elks,” recalls Basil Wadkovsky, Chestertown attorney, longtime Elk, and fan of the Blue Bird’s Maryland Crab Soup.
“He was also very committed to promoting sports, including his years transporting the Kent County High sports teams to away games and his support of club lacrosse.”
He was a captain on a patrol boat with Aberdeen Proving Ground for over 15 years and was a well-known school bus contractor. He loved to support the kids and looked forward to each and every game. He also enjoyed hunting and the occasional beer.
Tater was a member of the Bay Country Moose Lodge #832 in Grasonville, Kent County Waterman’s Association, Chestertown Volunteer Fire Company, and Sacred Heart Catholic Church where he once served as an altar boy. He was also an honorary member of the Knights of Columbus.
In addition to his fiancé of 38 years, Ginger Usilton, and her children, Michael and Trish Usilton and Timmy Usilton of Chestertown, he is survived by a sister, Dot Mench of Chestertown; seven grandchildren, Amanda, Aaron, Ivy, Nick and three which he helped raise Samantha, Shannon and RJ, and five great grandchildren.
He is predeceased by a brother, Richard “Eggy” Schauber and a sister, Janet Schauber Manown.
A Mass of Christian Burial will be held on Wednesday, September 25, 2019 at 11:00 am at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Chestertown. Interment will be in Chester Cemetery, following service.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in his memory to the Kent Co. High School Boosters, or the Animal Care Shelter of Kent Co. 10720 Augustine Herman Highway Chestertown, MD 21620.