Obituary: David Pflug, 65

Thu, 07/26/2012 - 1:50pm
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David Lloyd Pflug Jr., who during a nearly three-decade banking career helped lead debt-restructuring efforts with the governments of both the Philippines and South Korea and Long Term Capital Management, died July 3 at Norwalk Hospital. He was 65.

Mr. Pflug was a voracious reader who maintained an extraordinary library in his New Canaan home that epitomized his wide and eclectic interests. Although his passions were largely centered around military history, they also ranged further afield, from Penn State football and the New York Giants to spy novels and spending time on Block Island. He and his family summered at their house on Corn Neck Road for the last 25 years.

A historian at heart, Mr. Pflug was a true expert in the Civil War and World War II. One of his idols was Winston Churchill, and he filled his library shelves with dozens of studies of the British wartime leader. In Churchill, Mr. Pflug saw someone who, like himself, was a man of fierce intelligence and varied interests.

Mr. Pflug was by nature quiet and reserved. Yet those who grew close to him knew a warm and loving man who was intensely loyal to family and friends. He was a gracious host who enjoyed pouring a nice bottle of wine at the dinner table and engaging in lively conversation.

Mr. Pflug was born on Sept. 22, 1946, to the late Margaret King Pflug and Dr. David Lloyd Pflug. He was raised in Teaneck, N.J. He attended Xavier Academy in New York City, and graduated from Cornell University with a degree in government. He received his master’s in political science from Washington State University, after which he began his banking career with Manufacturer’s Hanover Trust. Early in his career he was posted to Bangkok, Thailand, where he headed the bank’s representative office. That was followed by an assignment to Manila as branch manager. After returning to New York, he became the Vice President and Regional Manager for Southeast Asia, playing a major role in working with the government of the Philippines in the country’s debt restructuring.

In later years he led the bank’s efforts in restructuring the debt of Long Term Capital Management and the government of South Korea. Following the merger with Chemical Bank in late 1991, he was promoted to the role of Senior Credit Officer for International and continued in that position after Chemical acquired Chase Manhattan Corporation in 1995. When Chase acquired JP Morgan in 2000, he was named Chief Credit Officer for the investment banking arm and oversaw risk management.

While at Cornell he married Patti Jo Vita, and they shared 44 years of marriage that included their adventures living overseas together. After returning to the United States, they moved to New Canaan, Conn., with their son David and daughter Elizabeth. It was during David and Elizabeth’s high school years that another passion consumed Mr. Pflug’s life: their lacrosse and field hockey teams at New Canaan High School and later, at their respective universities. A loyal fan to his children’s teams, he would make sure to always leave work in time to make each of their games, home and away.

A resident of New Canaan for 31 years, he was a member of the Senior Men’s Club and the Country Club of New Canaan.

In addition to his parents, Mr. Pflug was pre-deceased by his son, David Lloyd Pflug III. He is survived by his wife Patti Jo of New Canaan; his daughter Elizabeth and son-in-law Timothy Donahue of Rye, N.Y.; daughter-in-law Kristen Eberhard of Glencoe, Il., and five grandchildren, Charles and Nicholas Pflug, and Riley, Lucy and Hillary Donahue. A memorial mass will be held at 10 a.m. on Monday, July 9, at St. Aloysius Church, 40 Maple Street, in New Canaan. In lieu of flowers, contributions in David’s memory may be made to the Norwalk Hospital Foundation, 34 Maple Street, Norwalk, Conn., 06856, or online at norwalkhospitalfoundation.org