Molly Fitch, a longtime East Village resident and the owner of the International Bar at 102 First Ave., died last night, Dec. 12. She was 51.
The bar's Instagram account confirmed the sad news. Details about the cause of death have not been made public.
We lost the most valuable, most authentic, most mythical creature in our lives last night. We are terrified of saying goodbye and putting our love and heartbreak into words. We celebrate the life of our owner, our friend, and creator of our little East Village family at the International Bar — an institution open to those who need a place to call home.We remain open 7 days a week at regular hours. Please give our team the love we need to continue to serve the East Village community with Molly's legacy.
The International Bar has had several iterations in the East Village, first at 119 St. Mark's Place in the 1970s then later at 120 1/2 First Ave. In 2008, Molly and Shawn Dahl reopened the International and kept the downtown spirit going until the landlord didn't renew the lease. In November 2017, the International merged with its sister bar, the Coal Yard, at its current location, 102 First Ave. at Sixth Street.
"She was an embodiment of the old East Village, a pre-commercialized downtown New York where small businesses and punk rockers and individuals could make it," former bouncer and bar manager David O'Donnell told the Post.
I spent time at both the International and the Coal Yard and had the opportunity to get to know Molly. I always thought she was one of the kindest and coolest people I've ever met.
We were also neighbors for a while on Eighth Street between Avenue B and Avenue C. I've long been a very early morning person, and I'd run into her outside: me on the way to work and her coming home from closing up the bar.
Once, on a frigid January Monday morning, she insisted on driving me to Astor Place so I could catch the 6 train for work. We got in her rustic pickup truck, and I remember it was warmer outside than inside. We laughed the whole way to Astor Place.
A lovely remembrance, sad as it is. Thank you.
Speechless, really. May she rest in power.
RIP Molly - shockingly sad to lose such a legend of the neighborhood. Molly was so kind, so accepting and so humble. My word what a loss to our community. I will hold tight to all our wonderful interactions Molly. Onward and upward friends.
She was always a welcoming mischievous spirit at the old International Bar. I cherish the nickname she bestowed on me. Such a lovely person and embodiment of the neighborhood. Gone too soon. I hope she rests in peace.
I'm so sorry to hear this - a huge loss - sympathy to Molly's loved ones and community. Molly was so friendly to me when I hung out at the Intl Bar in late 00s and after chatting w/ me invited me to do an event at the bar- taking genuine interest in what the community was up to... I was just a little lesser connected working class artistic person who had moved to the city just a few years before - it's this kind of spirit you don't find as much anymore. So much of what's out there you have to be wealthy or super connected to do things. Molly was of the old skool NYC where she met you on your terms, got a sense about you and genuinely engaged and opened up her bar at less busy times to artistic/community events. It was not about the money. Though I could see she was a good business person with her bars.
Kudos to the Post for the great respect
She was a force to be reckoned with!! Always looked out and took care of her regulars and was very welcoming to new customers! Gonna miss that raspy voice and hearty laugh! RIP Molly.🙏🏻😞
lovely legend. rip.
I loved Molly. Sad sad news.
i knew molly for at least 30+ years. absolutely the nicest most loyal , functioning completely insane person ive ever know. she was a WHOLE bunch of fun people. a giant void that no one person can fill is all that is left. RIP
I regret never having the chance to reconcile our stupid squabble. I always thought it would happen eventually. Now she’s gone and the chance is not possible. Love you, Molly.
Was a regular there, back when it was The Old Homestead, run by two Polish sisters, Wanda and Theresa, and their husbands, who I believe were a Ukranian and a Yugoslavian. It was always like dropping in on family, albeit a family that drank too much! And what a cast of resident barflys. I'm long-gone from the neighborhood, but it sounds like Dear Molly continued running the place in the same tradition.
Condolences to those who are missing her the most.
So so young with much life to live. Condolences to her loved ones. RIP in sweet Molly :(
Molly was always kind to me. She took interest in me being from Texas and what brought me to NYC and the International Bar. Always enjoyed her company. I feel if I had not of met her, I would have missed something special. Love to her family.
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