Gerard David Schine
Schine-GerardDavid 1954.jpg
Schine at the Army-McCarthy hearings, 1954
Born September 11, 1927(1927-09-11)
Gloversville, New York
Died June 19, 1996 (age 68)
Los Angeles, California
Cause of death Airplane crash
Resting place Westwood Village Cemetery
Nationality United States
Education Phillips Academy
Harvard University (1949)
Known for Army-McCarthy Hearings
Religion Jewish
Spouse Hillevi Rombin
Children Frederick Berndt Schine (1962-1996)
J. Mark Schine
Vidette Schine Perry
Kevin Schine (twin of Berndt)
Alex Schine
Lance Schine
Parents Junius Myer Schine
Hildegarde Feldman
Relatives Renee Schine Crown (sister)

Gerard David Schine (September 11, 1927June 19, 1996) also known as G. David Schine, was a central figure in the Army-McCarthy Hearings of 1954.

Anti-communism and Army-McCarthyEdit

Born in Gloversville, New York, Schine came from a wealthy family in the movie theater, hotel and real estate industries. At age 24, Schine published an anti-communism pamphlet called Definition of Communism in 1952, and had a copy placed in every room of his family's chain of hotels. This attracted the attention of Roy Cohn, who at that time was Senator Joseph McCarthy's chief counsel. Schine soon joined McCarthy's staff as chief consultant. Among their other anti-communist activities, Schine and Cohn conducted a highly publicized, and widely ridiculed,[1] tour of Europe in 1953, examining libraries of the United States Information Agency for books written by authors they deemed to be Communists or fellow travelers.[2]

In November 1953, Schine was drafted into the U. S. Army as a private. Cohn immediately began a campaign to get special privileges for Schine. Cohn met with and made repeated phone calls to military officials from the Secretary of the Army down to Schine's company commander. He asked that Schine be given a commission, which the Army refused due to Schine's lack of qualifications, and that Schine be given light duties, extra leave and not be assigned overseas. At one point, Cohn was reported to have threatened to "wreck the Army" if his demands were not met.[3] In the Army-McCarthy Hearings of 1954, the Army charged Cohn and McCarthy with using improper pressure to influence the Army, while McCarthy and Cohn counter-charged that the Army was holding Schine "hostage" in an attempt to squelch McCarthy's investigations into Communists in the Army. The hearings were broadcast live using the relatively new medium of television and were viewed by an estimated 20 million people. In anticipation of the hearings, Schine and Cohn appeared on the cover of TIME on March 22, 1954.[4]

Schine and Cohn were rumored to have a sexual relationship, although there has never been any proof of this. More recently, some historians have concluded it was a friendship and that Schine was heterosexual.[5] Schine was known to have a fondness for attractive women, and during this period, he was romantically linked with some starlets, including Rhonda Fleming and Piper Laurie. [6] Roy Cohn's homosexuality would later become publicly known, and he died of AIDS in 1986.

The findings of the Army-McCarthy hearings cleared Senator McCarthy of any direct wrongdoing, placing the blame on Cohn alone. But the exposure of McCarthy and his methods before a television audience is considered by many as being key to his downfall from his former position of power and influence.[7] Roy Cohn resigned from McCarthy's staff shortly after the hearings.

After the Army-McCarthy hearingsEdit

After the hearings, Schine left politics and declined to comment on the episode for the rest of his life. He remained active in the private sector as a businessman and an entrepreneur, working in the hotel, music, and film industries, and he was a founding member of the Young Presidents' Organization.[8] In 1957, he married the Miss Universe of 1955, Hillevi Rombin of Sweden. [9] They had six children and were married for nearly 40 years until their deaths in 1996.

Schine made a cameo appearance as himself on a 1968 episode of Batman.[10] Schine was executive producer of the 1971 film The French Connection, which was nominated for eight Academy Awards and won five, including Best Picture. Shortly afterwards, Schine was involved with chart topping music that achieved Billboard gold and platinum and Cash Box #1, by The DeFranco Family. Schine's company, Schine Music, would also provide songs to Lou Rawls and Bobby Sherman, among others. A musician himself, Schine had music that he had composed published, and at one point, he guest-conducted the Boston Pops Orchestra for Arthur Fiedler. Schine's post production video house in Hollywood, Studio Television Services, handled clients such as HBO, Disney, Orion, and MGM/UA. His publicly traded research and development company, High Resolution Sciences, endeavored for years to bring high definition to broadcast television.


Schine was killed in 1996, at the age of 68, in a private airplane accident in Los Angeles, California. His wife and one son were with him on the plane, and all three perished. [11]

External linksEdit


  1. ^ See for example: Cook, Fred J. (1971). The Nightmare Decade: The Life and Times of Senator Joe McCarthy. Random House. pp. pp. 411-413. ISBN 0-394-46270-X. 
  2. ^ Ward, Geoffrey C. (1988). "Roy Cohn". American Heritage Magazine. Retrieved 2008-03-12. "His single stated regret was that he and his young fellow-counsel, G. David Schine, had ever undertaken their celebrated 1953 trip to Europe to purge United States Information Agency libraries of 'more than thirty thousand works by Communists, fellow-travelers and unwitting promoters of the Soviet cause.'" 
  3. ^ "The Self-Inflated Target". Time (magazine). March 22, 1954.,9171,819554,00.html. Retrieved 2008-03-11. "While they talked, newsservice teletypes were clacking out, for the morning papers, the Army's sensational charge: Roy Cohn had threatened to "wreck the Army" in an attempt to get special treatment for one Private G. David Schine." 
  4. ^ "Cohen and Schine. The Army Got Its Orders.". Time (magazine). March 22, 1954.,16641,1101540322,00.html. Retrieved 2008-03-12. 
  5. ^ See for example: Miller, Neil (1995). "Out of the Past: Gay and Lesbian History from 1869 to the Present". New York: Vintage Books. ;
    Wolfe, Tom (April 3, 1988). "Dangerous Obsessions". New York Times. "But so far as Mr. Schine is concerned, there has never been the slightest evidence that he was anything but a good-looking kid who was having a helluva good time in a helluva good cause. In any event, the rumors were sizzling away ..." ;
    Baxter, Randolph (November 13, 2006). "An Encyclopedia of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, and Queer Culture". glbtq, Inc. 
    On the other hand, author Tom Wicker refers to Schine as "Cohn's boyfriend:" Wicker, Tom (1995). Shooting Star: The Brief Arc of Joe McCarthy. Harcourt. pp. pp. 127, 138 & 166. ISBN 015101082X. 
  6. ^ "Piper Laurie". Glamour Girls of the Silver Screen. 
  7. ^ See, for example:
    Oshinsky, David M. (2005). A Conspiracy So Immense: The World of Joe McCarthy. Oxford University Press. pp. pp 464-465. ISBN 0-19-515424-X. ,
    Reeves, Thomas C. (1982). The Life and Times of Joe McCarthy: A Biography. Madison Books. pp. pp 639 et seq.. ISBN 1-56833-101-0. 
  8. ^ McNees, Pat. "YPO: The First 50 Years". 
  9. ^ "G. David Schine Is Married". New York Times. October 23, 1957. 
  10. ^ "The Entrancing Dr. Cassandra". March 7, 1968. 
  11. ^ "Crash Kills G. David Schine, 69, McCarthy-Era Figure". New York Times. June 21, 1996. "G. David Schine, a catalytic figure in the fierce drama that brought to a climax the chapter in American history known as the McCarthy era, was killed on Wednesday when a single-engine plane piloted by his son Berndt crashed shortly after takeoff from Burbank, Calif. Mr. Schine, who was 69 and lived in Los Angeles, died with his wife, Hillevi, 64, and their son, 35." 

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