Ottomar Herrmann, patriarch of the family that rescued Austria's Royal Lipizzan Stallions during World War II and later brought them to America, has died.
The Myakka City resident died of a heart attack Monday in Bourne, Mass., about 45 minutes after the end of a performance, said his daughter, Gabriella Herrmann. He was 75.
Mr. Herrmann was born in Slovakia in 1929. In 1945, just before the Russian invasion of Austria, the Royal Lipizzan Stallions were rescued by his family, with the help of American Gen. George S. Patton.
Mr. Herrmann began giving performances of the stallions shortly after the family arrived in the United States in the early 1960s. The Lipizzans perform centuries-old aerial jumps, kicks and strikes that were first honed on battlefields.
Herrmann family members keep the horses on a Myakka City ranch, 20 miles east of Sarasota.
Mr. Herrmann is also survived by a son, Guido Herrmann. His wife, Lydia, predeceased him.