1916 - 2012
Richard K. “Dick” Stuart was born June 2, 1916, in Belmont, Miss., to Everett K. Stuart and Elsie L. Gowey. He grew up in Providence and Cranston, R.I., graduating from Cranston High School in 1934. He received his B.S. from Rhode Island State College and went on to earn a Ph.D. in economics from the University of Pennsylvania in 1956.
Stuart was a professor of economics at the University of Maine, University of Pennsylvania, Pomona College, and finally at Whitman College, where he taught for 22 years between 1960 and 1982. He was a popular teacher and adviser whose students have gone on to many important positions in academia, government and business. He and his first wife, Lucia Stuart, especially treasured their year spent in Iran, where he had a Fulbright Lectureship at the University of Tehran in 1964/65.
Dick was an active volunteer throughout his life. His community service started in Maine, where he was a Boy Scout master for several years, teaching wilderness skills, hiking and camping. Following his move west, Stuart co-founded and volunteered in Project READ, served on the Walla Walla Library and State Library boards, on local and state boards of the League of Women Voters and as business manager of the Walla Walla Symphony. An avid adventure seeker, Dick led his family several times across country and through the West, camping in and exploring National Parks and scenic areas. His daughter, Nan, recalls stopping at every historical marker from Maine to California, stimulating a family love of history, geography and wanderlust.
Inspired by the stories of the Wright Brothers and the Lindbergh trans-Atlantic flight, Dick was a passionate model airplane builder from age 10 to recent years, ending up with an extensive collection of flying models. For several years he taught eager Walla Walla kids how to make model airplanes. He also loved choral singing, classical music, reading and traveling the world. Frugality led to an early interest in home brewing. His son, Bruce, remembers collecting empty beer bottles from roadsides (a penny each) in the early 1950s to provide capacity for the next batch of beer. His last batch of Stuart’s “Low Brow” was brewed in the late 1980s and helped inspire two grandsons to follow in his footsteps.
Dick is survived by his wife of 21 years, Peggy Metastasio; his son, Bruce and daughter -in-law Lynne Stuart; his daughter, Nan and son-in-law Ken Munsey; his stepdaughter, Mary Metastasio; five grandchildren, two grandsons-in-law, a grandson’s fiancé, and one great-grandson. He was preceded in death by Lucia Jones Stuart, his wife of 50 years in 1990; a brother, Leslie Stuart; and his parents.
A private family celebration of his life will be held at a later date. Friends may write memories and sign the online guestbook at www.mountainview-colonial