Martin Raphael Flug; AB 1952, MBA 1957; died February 10, 2015

Martin Raphael Flug


Martin Raphael, beloved father, grandfather, son, brother and husband, and an entrepreneur and business leader in New York and Colorado since the early 1960s. Died at home in Aspen, Colo., on February 10, 2015. Son of the late Samuel S. Flug and the late Evelyn R. Flug of Brooklyn, NY. Born January 6, 1931, in Brooklyn. He graduated from Harvard College (1952), Yale Law School (1955), and Harvard Business School (1957). A winter visitor to Aspen since 1963, he has lived there since 1979. He was the husband of Sarah Kennedy Flug; the father of Jeremy J. Flug of Denver and Eliza Flug of Seattle; grandfather of Matthew, William, Benjamin and Henry Flug of Denver and Lauren Coburn of Seattle; father-in-law of Angela Murray Flug of Denver; and brother of James F. Flug of Washington DC, Barbara Flug Colin of Roslyn Estates, N.Y., the late Robert K. Flug of Portland, Ore., and Victoria Flug Sterling of Denver. At his death he was co-chairman of the Board of Gulftech International, Inc., of Aspen, a group of five companies that design, manufacture and lease foodprocessing equipment. A natural entrepreneur, he often told the story of his first serious business venture, when, on his way to enroll in Harvard, he got sidetracked and used his tuition money to buy the first Boston dealership for the then unheard-of Vespa Motor Scooter. The business was a great success, as he foresaw (and he still enrolled in Harvard that semester on a scholarship). The energy and vision and restless intelligence he showed in his business ventures also extended to his varied civic, charitable and educational activities, including Trustee of the Aspen Center for Physics, Life Trustee of the Aspen Music Festival and School, Benefactor of the Martin R. Flug Professorship of International Law, the Ernest Rubenstein Scholarship and the Samuel S. Flug Memorial Scholarship, all at Yale Law School, and of the Samuel S. and Evelyn R. Flug Scholarship Fund at Harvard College, Past Board Member and Officer of the Aspen Country Day School, Past Chairman of United Way of Rye, NY, Past President of Manursing Island Club, NY. In honor of his mother and his own dedication to children's education, he founded and supported the Evelyn R. Flug Children's Library in Aspen, and a private foundation to support experiments in education. But a simple — even if impressively lengthy — list of boards and titles does not capture his deep involvement and commitment to causes and activities he cared about. In Aspen, inspired by his early friendship with local newspaper publisher Bil Dunaway, Martin Flug reveled in mountain life with the same intensity he brought to all his endeavors. He bicycled all summer, including his iconic rides in Aspen's Fourth of July parades, dressed in an Uncle Sam suit. He skied with abandon every winter and was an early aficionado of uphill skiing, long before it enjoyed its current wave of popularity— skiing up Buttermilk and then descending with glee. His skiing adventures extended to heli-skiing in Canada, where (as he loved to tell the story) he once brought an end to a season-long snow drought by leading his skiing party in an American Indian rain chant. At home in Aspen, his hospitality extended to a lengthy list of artists and intellects, most especially the musicians of the Aspen Music Festival and physicists visiting the Aspen Center for Physics.

Published in the Denver Post on February 12, 2015