David W. Jauer, whose German heritage led to decades of participation in Fiesta and the Beethoven Maennerchor, died Dec. 21 after a lengthy battle with cancer. He was 72.
Friends and family gathered at Porter Loring North on Monday for a memorial service honoring Jauer, a fifth-generation Texan descending from Johann Carl Ludwig Jauer, a citizen of the Republic of Texas.
His lineage led to his active involvement in various organizations that celebrated Texas history and culture, including the Sons of the Republic of Texas, where he served as president and was active for over 40 years; Fiesta; and the Beethoven Maennerchor.
“He loved the celebration of cultures that happens at Fiesta, and how much it was rooted in remembering the past, but also celebrating our present and our future,” said his daughter, Joy Jauer.
Beginning in 1978, Jauer co-chaired the Sons of the Republic of Texas Alamo Chapter’s Fiesta event, “This Hallowed Ground,” a walking tour inside the original Alamo compound.
Jauer gave over 40 years of service to Fiesta San Antonio as a life member and commissioner of participating Fiesta member organizations. As a result, he was inducted into the Order of the Cascaron, which recognizes Fiesta’s exceptional volunteers, in 2014.
He also was a member of the Accordion Club, Bourbon Club, Car Club, and service organizations such as the Rotary International and San Antonio Jaycees.
Jauer was born in San Antonio at the historic Nix Medical Center. Following his graduation from Robert E. Lee High School, he served as a Navy cryptographer on the USS Walke during the Vietnam War.
After completing a tour of duty on a UN peacekeeping mission in the Mediterranean and a year-long expedition in Europe, Jauer returned to Texas, where he graduated from Texas State University and then moved back to San Antonio.
Jauer married his wife of 42 years, Elizabeth, at the garden of Cathedral House. They first met at a friend’s party, where she beat him in three games of backgammon. Time passed, and Jauer asked her for what she described as a “power date.”
“He said, ‘Would you like to go out with me? I have quite a few obligations today,’” she recalled. He proceeded to list his several responsibilities that day.
“His sense of humor comes in everyone’s description of David and mine as well,” Elizabeth Jauer said. “It carried him through his five cancers. It has made him fondly [remembered] in the hearts of his friends and our family.”
Jauer celebrated his German heritage as a 26-year member of the Beethoven Maennerchor. He frequented the group’s old-timers table, often wearing a guayabera shirt festooned with Fiesta medals. He designed Fiesta medals for the organization and formed a years-long friendship with Claus Heide, immediate past president of the Maennerchor.
“We met at Fiesta commission about 40 years ago, and then we hung out together and we worked on different committees, and we saw each other all the time,” Heide said. “He’s been a good friend all along.”
In addition to his commitment to serving others, Jauer was also known for his strong professional principles as a real estate broker and appraiser.
Jauer established his own real estate appraisal firm, Jauer and Associates, in 1973 and retired in 2015.
“It was important to him that the people who lived or still lived in or sold their houses, for which he was doing an appraisal, got to live somewhere safe, and they got a good valuation for their investment,” Joy Jauer said.