Thursday, July 24, 2008

Alan Schaefer

Alan with his niece and sister

Alan Schaefer was a regular at the Waukesha Chess Club. In fact he played in the last tournament I played there. That’s why I was surprised to hear that he was in bad health.

I visited him a few days ago, and we talked about his chess history. Alan moved back to Wisconsin in June 2007, after spending many years in Massachusetts. He got into chess as an adult, and got more than he bargained for when he visited the local chess club for the first time. Not only did he find himself signed up as a USCF member, he also got to play his first rated game against a strong opponent. Although he was soundly beaten, he was determined to get better. In time, he was able to get his rating up to class B.

Alan says that one of the main reasons he didn't get better was the fact that he didn't take the game seriously enough. He recalled a game where at one point, 7 pieces were lined up on the same file. Instead of trying to find the best move, he was intent on putting an 8th piece on the vacant square. He lost two moves later!

Alan currently resides at the Angels Grace Hospice in Oconomowoc, (920) 474-7800, he welcomes visitors and/or email


  1. What a spirit! That's my kinda guy...years from now when no one is going to remember who won or lost that game...they'll all remember seeing 8 pieces all lined up on a file! Reminds me of Tin Cup.

    God Bless, Alan!

  2. Sorry to all of Alan's family;