Former long-time Millrose Games Meet Director Howard Schmertz passed away Thursday, March 27,  in Port Washington, New York, at the age of 88. The cause was complications of congestive heart failure, his wife said.

USA Track & Field and our sport have lost a great friend,” said USATF CEO Max Siegel. “Howard was a Hall of Famer and someone who was respected and loved by many in the sport, from athletes to officials to fellow meet directors. Indoor track & field, and especially the Millrose Games, will always reflect his influence. On behalf of USATF, we send our sincere condolences to his family and loved ones.”

Schmertz was named assistant meet director of the Millrose Games in 1950 and succeeded his father as meet director in 1975, a position he held until 2004. In 2007, Schmertz was inducted into the Millrose Games Hall of Fame as the sole inductee, the meet’s 100th year.