|By Phillip R Smith|
|January 29, 2014|
Mayer Riff (1948-2013)
Mayer Riff was a formidable chess force growing up in Jersey City. While in high school he became active in the YMCA Chess Club and captured the Hudson County Scholastic Championship. Despite slight in physique, he was a powerhouse over the board.
Deeply involved with the "Y" club's activities, he served as club President, North Jersey Chess League Team Captain, club Tournament Director, and occasional editor of the club's newsletter, "Chess Chat." Mayer also was a USCF tournament director for Continental Chess Association events.
Mayer not only earned a master chess rating but was also a Life Master in contract bridge. He had an enduring passion about New York area baseball and football teams. Mayer was an early Wall Street "quant," having completed his actuarial exams and worked many years at the Insurance Services Office in lower Manhattan.
Well versed in all aspects of chess, Mayer often chose sharp tactics and would deviate early from book lines. He was known for using every minute available on his clock and excelled at time scrambles. Often he would be deep in thought at his game, flipping a pen in his hand.
The following game was played in the Eastern Team Championship.
White: M. Riff, Jersey City YMCA
White: Irving Ellner, Elizabeth
Rest in peace, Mayer.
Obituary submitted by
Mayer Riff may you rest in peace.