Philip Lindy (June 29, 2013)

Philip B. Lindy, 83, of Center City, a philanthropist known for his work in city neighborhoods with Drexel University, died Saturday, June 29, of a heart attack.

Born in Philadelphia in 1930, Mr. Lindy married Annabel Lindy in December 1951. She died in 2010.

Mr. Lindy graduated from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1952, served briefly in the Navy, and then founded a construction and contracting company, Lindy Bros., with his two brothers in the mid-1950s. Almost 20 years later, he founded Lindy Property Management.

The success of those enterprises funded a series of philanthropic pursuits. Mr. Lindy sought to create a program for disadvantaged youth in the city modeled on successful programs elsewhere, and eventually worked with Drexel University to establish the Lindy Scholars tutoring and mentoring program in 2008.

Three years later, Mr. Lindy donated $15 million to Drexel’s Center for Civic Engagement, which was renamed in his honor. The center is now housed in the Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation, established last year.

At a ceremony establishing the institute, Mr. Lindy’s son Alan said, neighborhood students and families wore gray T-shirts with “Phil rocks!” in navy blue.

“He insisted that it be done for the neighborhood,” Alan Lindy said. “It wasn’t your typical, large, trustee, black-tie affair that you would have for this type of naming event; it was a neighborhood event.”

Mr. Lindy was also active with the Gershman Y and Tribe 12, and was on the boards of several other foundations and community organizations.

Along the way, Alan Lindy said, his father managed to pack in an active social life.

“He always said he wanted to die on the tennis court. He never wanted to live past the day he couldn’t have fun any longer,” Alan Lindy said. “The day before he went to the hospital, he was busy from 7 in the morning to 11 at night.”

In addition to his son, Mr. Lindy is survived by his companion, Joan Brandeis; another son, Frank; a daughter, Elaine; two brothers; and eight grandchildren.

The funeral will be at 1 p.m. Monday, July 1, at Joseph Levine & Sons, 4737 Street Rd., Trevose. Burial will follow in Roosevelt Memorial Park.