NEW YORK - Industry veteran Sylvester "Tim" Timpanaro died on Saturday, Nov. 13, in Amagansett, New York, where he lived after retiring as VP/GMof New York-based RhinoEdit in March, 2003. He was 71. The funeral was Wednesday, November 17, 2004.
"He had a fan club second to none," says MVG president David Binstock. "He knew and touched so many people. He was nice to everyone, and everyone loved and respected him. He looked after the world. He would say, 'You have a problem; let me help you take care of it.'" Timpanaro started his career at EUE Screen Gems, New York, in '63 as an optical cameraman. He soon moved up to VP/postproduction supervisor for its film division. In '84, he joined TVC Video, which later became VSC Post. He was executive VP/general manager of that company from '86 to '92. VSC Post merged with the former Manhattan Transfer/Edit (MT/E) in '93, and Timpanaro become executive VP of sales. When MT/E went public in '94 and became International Post Ltd. (IPL), Timpanaro was named a VP of IPL. (Since then, aforementioned IPL entities changed hands again and later became part of what is now Santa Monica-headquartered Ascent Media Group.) Timpanaro moved to RhinoEdit in '96. Timpanaro's brother-in-law, David Freeman, senior VP creative director/copywriter at BBDO delivered an eloquent tribute; an edited portion of it follows: "It was never Sylvester, always just Timmy. To his family and his friends (he had hundreds of friends) always just Timmy. If you needed a hand, just call Timmy. If there was a party, well it wouldn't be much of a party without Timmy. Timmy was a five foot eight inch burst of energy, a big wide-open smile, a lasso of love around his wife and kids and a sucker for any hard luck story. Timmy was the sun we all spun around. And when Timmy's heart failed him and he drifted away, the sun went out. But even when the sun leaves the sky, the warmth still lingers. And everyone who knew him will be warmed by his memory forever. There's a huge empty space in our lives. Over times hollow places get filled in with daily obligations and gentle wearing of times as it softens the rough edges of hurt. But there will always be a place that can only be filled with memories of Timmy. Just Timmy." Timpanaro was born and raised in Astoria, Queens. After High School he joined the army and fought in the Korean War. He became a sergeant in less than 2 years. After the army, he later tried several different careers. He owned a pizza parlor. He was a longshoreman for a time. And then he found his home in the film production industry. He rose to become the head of the optical division at EUE Screengems. He was one of the pioneers as the industry transitioned to video tape. The film business wasn't Timpanaro's only love - he was a huge jazz fan. Along with his partner Bruce Ricker he owned Rhapsody Films and produced a number of award-winning jazz documentaries. After a distinguished career lasting 42 years, Timpanaro retired to his home in Amagansett, Long Island. His time in retirement was sweet but much too short. He suffered heart failure on November 13 in Amagansett. He is survived by his beloved wife Abby nee Sheridan, as well as his cherished children Denise Borgia, Patricia Riess, Cindy Connolloy, Michael Timpanaro and James Timpanaro. He is also survived by his older brother George. Timmy also leaves behind 14 grandchildren.