Brooklyn Heights

Brooklyn Heights mourns Ted Reid, 90, Davis Polk partner, BBG board member, Brooklyn Museum to Bargemusic

July 28, 2020 Editorial Staff
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Ted Reid. Photo courtesy of the Reid Family

Edward S. Reid III, of Brooklyn Heights and Quogue, Long Island, died peacefully in his Brooklyn Heights home on Friday, July 17 at the age of 90.

Ted led a life devoted to his family, the communities in which he lived and the organizations that he served. He was born March 24, 1930 in Detroit, the second of three children to Margaret O. Reid and Edward S. Reid Jr. Ted earned his undergraduate degree at Yale University in 1951, becoming a member of Phi Beta Kappa. After serving active duty in the U.S. Marine Corps in Korea from 1951 to 1953, he earned an LLB magna cum laude at Harvard Law School in 1956.

Upon graduating law school, Ted began working at Davis Polk & Wardwell, where he became a partner in 1964 and remained until his retirement in 1995, having served his last five years of active practice as head of the firm’s Tokyo office. During his career, he also served on the board of directors of General Mills for 15 years and was a member of the New York City Board of Higher Education.

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Ted and his wife of 66 years, Carroll Grylls, raised their family in Brooklyn Heights and were devoted to Brooklyn and its institutions. Ted was on the board of directors of Brooklyn Botanic Garden for 29 years and was a trustee of the Brooklyn Museum for 26 years, serving as its chairman for five years.

He also served on the board of directors of Bargemusic, Ltd., known for presenting concerts on a barge off Fulton Ferry. Ted had a passion for music and loved going to the Metropolitan Opera and the New York Philharmonic, in addition to concerts at Bargemusic itself.

He was also an active member of several social and cultural associations, including the Quoque Beach Club, the Quoque Field Club, the Shinnecock Yacht Club and the Heights Casino, often serving in leadership roles, as well as the Century Association and the Rembrandt and Iphetonga clubs.

Ted ran five New York City marathons and continued to ski and play tennis well into his 70s (at times heroically resisting the inevitable effects of time). He was known to one and all for being a ‘true gentleman,’ quick with a kind word and smile, as well as for his self-deprecating sense of humor.

Ted once wrote: “Armed for the first time with my 70-and-over handicap for the NASTAR ski races, I won a Silver medal after a lifetime of struggling and failing to get above a Bronze; this achievement was then put into perspective when I learned five minutes later that all four of my grandchildren old enough to ski had won Gold.”

Ted lived a full and adventurous life, deeply engaged with his community and family, and he hoped for the same for his children and grandchildren. He will be greatly missed.

He is survived by his sister Claudia; brother William; wife Carroll; children Carroll (and Mac) Highet, Richard (and Jill) Reid, Jenny (and Michael) McTigue, and Margaret (and Matt) Boyer; 12 grandchildren, and one great grandchild. A private graveside service will be held for family members on Thursday July 30 at the Quogue Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, a donation in Ted’s honor may be made to the Quogue Wildlife Refuge or to the Church of the Atonement (Quogue).

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