Stanley R. Chichester
Sarasota, Fla. - Stanley R. Chichester, 98, passed away April 4, 2017. Stan, known as "Chi" to many of his friends, was born in Freeport, N.Y. on Sept. 25, 1918, to Joseph and Gertrude Chichester. He attended Freeport High School, where he graduated with perfect attendance, and while there, developed what would become a lifelong passion for music and photography. After high school, Stan attended Pace College in New York City before enlisting in the Army Air Corps during World War II. He was part of the 8th Air Force, 94th Bomb Group, and his B-17 was shot down returning from the Schweinfurt Raid in Germany. He and his family have always been grateful to the brave members of the French Underground who risked their lives to help him and his crew escape safely to England. He married his high school sweetheart, Kay, after returning from the war, and they settled in Merrick, Long Island. Upon his return to the U.S., Stan was hired by TWA as a commercial pilot. He flew domestically and internationally for 33 years and finished his career flying his favorite plane, the Boeing 747, on trans-world flights. He never missed a day of work, an achievement commemorated with a letter from the president of TWA upon his retirement. Stan was very proud that, during his flying career, he never put a scratch on a single plane. One of his fondest memories and proudest accomplishments was ordering and building a Sears kit home. His building crew consisted of his wife, Kay, and close friend, Bob McNutt. Without prior construction experience, they built a new home from the block foundation to the roof in the days before plywood sheathing and power tools were available. Kay and Stan raised their daughters and lived in their Sears home in Merrick until they retired and moved to Florida in 1978. Stan had a keen interest in politics, world events and the stock market. His big love was music, and he enjoyed the Sarasota Orchestra immensely. Most important to him were his friends and family. He was always ready to help others, was tremendously giving throughout his life, and was the type of person everyone gravitated towards and enjoyed being around. He will be remembered for his kindness, easy way of being, positivity, and sense of humor. Stan is survived and missed by his two daughters, Lynn and her husband, Hugh Macfarlane, from Tampa, and Cathy Taylor of East Lyme; granddaughter, Annie Wildermuth of Omaha, Neb.; and close family friends, Rob and Sharon McNutt of Lakewood Ranch, Fla. He was predeceased by his wife of 67 years, Katherine "Kay" Chichester. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Sarasota Orchestra ( www.sarasotaorchestra.org/donate ) or Church of the Palms ( www.churchofthepalms.org/egive.html ), both of which provided great joy and inspiration. Online condolences can be offered at www.wiegandbrothers.com .
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