Mitchell Denker (1946-2013)

Mitchell Denker and Barbara DeMaro
Mitchell Denker and Barbara DeMaro

Mitchell Denker, 66, passed away on Saturday, August 24, 2013, in Leland, NC.

All the trustees of the U.S. Chess Trust appreciated having Mitchell as a trustee. He took a great interest in the Arnold Denker Tournament of High School Champions and was constantly looking for ways to make that tournament an enjoyable and rewarding experience for the players who participated.

Mitchell Denker and Denker Tournament participant. Photo courtesy, Barbara DeMaro
Mitchell Denker and Denker Tournament participant. Photo courtesy, Barbara DeMaro

Mitchell was active in speaking at both the opening and closing ceremonies of the Denker Tournament and the Dewain Barber Tournament of K-8 Champions.

All of us who knew Mitchell respected his commitment to chess. He truly carried on
the work of his father Arnold Denker, who established the Denker Tournament.

All of the trustees will miss Mitchell a great deal.

Harold J. Winston, U.S. Chess Trust Chairman

  • Randie Denker

    As the one year anniversary of my brother Mitchell’s death rolls around, I find that I miss him more, not less, as time goes on. I was very moved by the comments people left here. Obviously, Mitchell’s wit, brilliance and charisma were appreciated by all. Like Mitch, (although I lack his and my father’s chess talent), I want to see the Denker chess legacy continue and thrive. Please let me know if I can do anything in this regard, even if only in a symbolic or ceremonial way. I would be happy to help.

  • Dewain Barber

    It has taken me a long time to come to terms with the loss of Mitchell. He and I worked together on the GM Arnold Denker Tournament of High School Champions since the passing of his father, Arnold. He was a genuine caring and concerned representative of his father’s legacy. Mitchell’s legacy represents the second generation of the Denker and I am proud to have known him.
    During the years we worked together and with the support of the Chess Trust we saw the Denker event emerge as the “place to be” when it came to quality events available to high school players. The University of Texas at Dallas made the event also shine by providing a four year scholarship.
    Finally, Mitchell truly made every player feel comfortable and was pleased to see them and was proud of every state representative from Maine to Hawaii and Alaska to Florida. He will be missed, but not forgotten.

  • Bob Schultz

    I graduated from Hamilton College with Mitch. I have a beach house in WB, NC and was going to look him up after seeing (in the school bulletin) that he moved to Wiimington. I am so very sorry and sad to hear of his passing. He was clever, funny, and sincere.

  • Barbara A. DeMaro

    Mitchell was full of life, brilliant, kind, witty and generous! He was a long-standing Trustee on the U.S. Chess Trust Board and served without compensation. There aren’t enough words to express how great of a person he was. I once met his court stenographer years back. He said he was brilliant and the best litigation attorney he ever worked with!

    Mitchell truly cared about each and every one of the Denker participants. At the opening ceremony every year, as he greeted each participant, took their flag, he would say something funny or interesting to them that made them smile or laugh. Everyone Mitchell came in contact with loved him, from hotel staff to presidents. He was an angel who touched everyone. I have lost a very, very, dear friend and will miss him more than you know.

    My deepest sympathy to Jaye, Dylan, and the entire Denker family.

    Barbara A. DeMaro

Leave a Reply