Ron Sauers, a skilled designer and building contractor known for his attention to detail, died on Aug. 14 after a long battle with cancer. He was 73.
“He was categorically one of the most intelligent carpenters I ever worked with. He was brilliant. His ability was on another level. Not only could he design it, he could build it so that every step led to the next. Very pragmatic, no wasted movement,” said Thom Fleming of Montauk, one of a generation of builders inspired by Mr. Sauers.
He lived in Montauk for a number of years, and examples of his work can be found throughout the East End. After leaving here, he moved to Manhattan, where he met his wife, the former Ronnie Beth Gould.
While in the city, he supervised construction of Greenacre Park on East 51st Street, a hidden gem featuring a waterfall, for the Rockefeller family, and managed the park for 40 years thereafter. He worked for a time at Rockefeller University supervising various construction projects.
During this time, Mr. Sauers continued with his contracting business, building and renovating sound and video studios for the entertainment industry. He and his wife bought a number of derelict buildings on Main Street in Beacon, N.Y., and restored them. The Sauerses are well known in the Hudson Valley for their part in the revitalization of the City of Beacon.
Mr. Sauers served in the Coast Guard and was an accomplished sailor. He spent many hours lovingly restoring his latest boat, a 48-foot classic ketch, Free Spirit, which was berthed on the Hudson River.
For 20 years, Mr. Sauers rented Taylor Island, in the middle of Coecles Harbor off Shelter Island, as a family retreat.
Ron Sauers was born in Brooklyn on Jan. 1, 1938, a son of James Sauers and the former Dorothy Stokes. He grew up in Babylon and joined the Coast Guard at 18. Stationed at Cape May, N.J., he worked up and down the East Coast on government construction projects.
Mr. Sauers is survived by his wife of 35 years, a brother, Tim Sauers of Montauk, and two daughters, Pamela Sauers Drumm and Tracy Sauers Erb, both of Montauk. He leaves three granddaughters, Melissa Drumm, Logan Erb, and Camille Erb, all of Montauk.
Mr. Sauers’s ashes will be spread at sea. A memorial service will be held at a time and place to be announced. Memorial contributions have been suggested to the Wolf Conservation Center, 7 Buck Run, South Salem, N.Y. 10590-1123.