Morton Shiekman Industry Icon Passes
Morton Shiekman, a retired wine and former retail liquor merchant passed away on August 21, 2019, at 97 years old. He was predeceased by his loving wife of 73 years, Roberta (Zeid) Shiekman, his son, Richard Shiekman, his brother Philip Shiekman and Philip’s first wife Judith. He is survived by his sons, Larry Shiekman (Joanna Cline) and Jon Shiekman (Dona), his daughter in law Meryl Moss, his sister-in-law Irene Shiekman, his grandchildren Robert Shiekman (Stephanie), Wendy Cohen (Shannon), Tommy Shiekman (Kumiko), Alex Shiekman, Andrew Shiekman, and Samantha Shiekman, and his great-grandchildren, Asher, Ezra, Kokomi, Nanami and Zachary.
Mort grew up in Philadelphia and attended Overbrook High School where he played football. He also attended the University of Pennsylvania where his football prowess earned him a starting spot at guard, first on the freshman team and later on the varsity. At the end of his senior year he was named All-East, was invited to play in all three of the post collegiate bowl games. He chose the East-West All Star game and played in San Francisco’s Kezar Stadium on January 1, 1943. Following his senior year, he was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers of the National Football League, but first enlisted in the US Army Air Corps. He was trained as a Navigator for the famed B-29 Aircraft and then was sent to the Second Air Force. However, before he could see combat, he was pulled from flying duty to play football for the 2nd Air Force “Superbombers”. In November of 1944, Shiekman suffered his first football injury that eventually ended his playing career.
After the war, Mort moved to Atlantic City to follow his father’s involvement in the liquor business, and later settled in Margate where he raised his family. He owned Caldwell’s Liquor stores and was invited to be an early member of the Wine and Spirits Guild of America, an industry association of prestigious retail liquor and wine merchants located throughout the USA. Morton had a fascination and interest in fine French wine, becoming one of the country’s leading authorities on Bordeaux and Burgundy wines, and receiving the prestigious Merite Agricole as a Chevalier from the French Government. Mort’s interest in wine led him to join the Commanderie de Bordeaux and the Chevalier de Tastevin.
His interest in fine wine led him to collaborate with both Alexis Lichine and Frank Schoonmaker. Soon Morton was involved in the Frank Schoonmaker Selections Company
And after unsuccessfully attempting to purchase it; founded the Parliament Import Company in 1967. Quickly Parliament became known throughout the wine world as a premium importer of fine wines. His son Jonathan continues the family legacy in the fine wine industry with his company…Linwood Wine and Spirit, LLC.
Mort was also a life-long Eagles fan, part of the group that owned the Eagles from 1949 to 1963 when the team was sold to Jerry Wolman. He passed on his affection for the team to his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren.
Mort was an avid, accomplished golfer and was a Board Member and Vice-President of Linwood Country Club for many years. He was a member of the Board of Directors of Shore Medical Center and President of the Shore Medical Center Foundation. After his retirement he moved to Boynton Beach, FL, where he maintained his interest in golf and revived his love of competitive gin rummy.
While Morton was a guy’s guy, his love of his family and devotion to his wife were clearly known.
Graveside services will be at Roosevelt Memorial Park, Trevose, PA at 11:30 am precisely, on Sunday, August 25, 2019. Family and friends are invited to gather at the Logan Hotel, 18th & Benjamin Franklin Parkway, immediately thereafter, and at the home of Jonathan & Dona Shiekman that Sunday evening only from 5:00 pm. until 8 pm. Contributions may be made to the Shore Medical Center Foundation, 100 Medical Center Way, Somers Point, NJ 08244.