Richard Lee Stilwell

Published 1:35 am Wednesday, May 28, 2008

By Staff
Richard Lee Stilwell of Chocowinity, N.C., formerly of Sherborn, Mass., died at his home on May 24 at the age of 75.
Richard was born on August 7, 1932, in Winchester, Va. Growing up in Luray, Va., Richard was both athletic and hard working. He played football, worked at a local ice cream shop and led tourists through the Luray Caverns. In 1953, he graduated from the Virginia Military Institute with a B.S. in civil engineering, worked for Bethlehem Steel, then entered the U.S. Air Force. He attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Sloan School of Management where he earned a master’s degree in business in 1958. Richard took a job with IBM in the New England area, where he worked as a systems engineer for 33 years. He met his wife, Claire Schwennker, at a customer site, and they were married on December 28, 1963.
Richard and Claire spent 31 years living in Sherborn, Mass., before retiring to North Carolina in 2002. They enjoyed spending decades of fun-filled summers at their cottage on Lake Champlain in upstate New York.
Richard was diagnosed with a neurological disease in early 2008. His gentleness and kind spirit coupled with his serenity and wry sense of humor offered his loved ones strength as the disease took away his mobility. Some of his interests included golf, tennis, skiing, and sailing with family and friends. He was an adept handyman who enjoyed working on countless projects in the house and yard.
In addition to his wife, Claire, Richard is survived by his elder daughter Jennifer Hill and husband, Richard, of The Woodlands, Texas; his son, Jim and wife, Michelle, of Hopkinton, Mass.; his younger daughter, Karen Miller and husband, Mark, of Pasadena, Calif.; his brother, James and wife, Kay; his sister, Anne of Luray, Va.; and seven grandchildren, Kevin and Derek Hill, Thomas, Isaac, and Jane Stilwell, and Luke and Elise Miller.
Calling hours will be held at Hillside Funeral Service, Washington, N.C., on Thursday, May 29, from 4 to 6 p.m. Richard will be buried at Mt. Zion Cemetery, Luray, Va. A graveside service, with a reception following at the Mt. Zion Church of the Brethren, will be held on May 31 at 2 p.m. Contributions in memory of Richard Lee Stilwell may be made to the Chocowinity EMS, 512 N.C. 33 Highway East, Chocowinity, NC, 27817.
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