INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Each stitch, each logo sewn into pieces of clothing are a piece of the legacy carried on by Andrew Schwier’s family through his business, Vintage 317. But now, an unlikely meeting with a foundation helping former basketball players is giving the family another way to carry on Schwier’s life.
The 26-year-old started the company as an Indiana sports fan, by finding vintage pieces of Indiana sports clothing to sell. When he was killed in 2017, his family kept it going, focusing on Drew’s life and the many blessings they said they’ve experienced because of the way he lived. But their latest one started with a unique find at a yard sale. It was a piece of pointillism artwork of George McGinnis, by the artist C.W. Mundy. They paid $4 for it and put it up for sale online.
“It was a God thing for sure,” Schwier’s father, Randy Schwier, said. “It was like that was meant to be. We paid $4 for this little print from probably the late 1970’s and it was just another way that we’ve seen blessings from Drew’s business.”
On the other end of the website was Scott Tarter.
“I see this really nice C.W. Mundy piece and it’s my friend George McGinnis and I’m thinking, well okay, George would love to see this,” Tarter said.
Tarter collects American Basketball Association material and helped found the Dropping Dimes Foundation. The organization is comprised of hall of fame and ABA legends, and works to help former ABA players, who often were not paid like those working in the NBA today.
“It’s financial, health care needs, sometimes they need things as basic as clothing. Unfortunately we recently helped someone out who couldn’t afford to bury his daughter. So there are some pretty serious life needs these guys come to us for,” Tarter said.
Right now, Tarter said they’re working to get the players pensions.
“The Indiana Pacers have been a huge supporter and really do all that they can to help us out. So far the pleas that we have made to the NBA have fallen on deaf ears,” he said.
But the Schwiers heard their cause and Tarter listened to theirs. Quickly negotiations for the purchase of the artworks, turned into a friendship and offer to help.
“That’s amazing what that young man’s family is doing to carry on his legacy and his name and how cool it is that we continue to be a hotbed of basketball history here in Indianapolis,” Tarter said.
Tarter said he offered full price and Vintage 317 offered to donate clothing, since it can be difficult for former players to find clothing in the right size. They’ve already made a donation and plan to make more in the future.
“It’s amazing how God has continued to put people in our lives that have been a blessing to us and to the kids and that we can help reach out to the local community and it’s all sports related that Drew would have loved,” Schwier said.