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In Memory Of Our Poets

Ellis Cameron "Cam" Stewart, Jr. (1925-2011) - Class Of 1943

STEWART, Ellis Cameron "Cam", Jr., age 85 passed away peacefully in his sleep on January 21, 2011 at Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville. A native of Montgomery, Alabama, Cam was preceded in death by his beloved wife of 65 years, Sissy (Mildred Ridley Stewart), on November 24, 2010, and by his parents, Ellis Cameron Stewart and Vannie Lamar Stewart. He is survived by his children, Cameron Ridley Stewart (Myrna) of Keller, Texas, George Howse Stewart (Karen) of Denver, Colorado, Elisabeth Lamar Stewart DeLargy (Jeff) of Austin, Texas, Mildred Florence Stewart Wells (John) of Salt Lake City, Utah, five grandchildren, and three great grandchildren and by his sisters in-law, Florence Howse Ridley and Susan Boardman Ridley of Murfreesboro. At age 17, while a senior in high school, Cam joined the Army Air Corps Enlisted Reserve. He completed the Aviation Cadet program and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps when he won his pilot's wings. He served as an instructor pilot and later as B-29 crew. After the end of World War II, Cam attended Vanderbilt University. With the birth of his son Rid, he became the first undergraduate father (at least officially) in the history of the university. Later, he joined the Alabama National Guard, subsequently moving to the National Guard Bureau in the Pentagon, Washington, DC. In 1967, he accepted a commission in the Regular Air Force. He served as Deputy Executive Officer to the Assistant Secretary of the Air Force for Manpower, Personnel and Reserve Affairs at the Pentagon, before volunteering for the duty in the Republic of Vietnam in 1969-70, where he served as an information officer for the 14th Special Operations Wing at Nha Trang AB and at 7th Air Force Headquarters in Saigon. In 1970, he returned to the Pentagon to the office of the Deputy Assistant Secretary of Reserve Affairs, where he served as Assistant Director for Reserve Readiness and Mobilization and later as Director for Reserve Personnel and Training. From 1974 until his retirement in 1977, Cam returned to his roots in Montgomery as Director of Information (now Public Affairs) for the Air University at Maxwell Air Force Base. Upon his retirement, Cam and Sissy moved to Clifftops in Monteagle, and a new chapter in their lives began. Although Clifftops was conceived as a vacation and weekend destination, Cam and Sissy became the first of many year round, permanent residents. Cam assisted the developer of Clifftops in promotional activities and later took over management of the development, until health problems precluded his continuing in that role. His activities in the community, however, did not cease but instead expanded. Cam served as Chairman of the Monteagle Planning Commission and was a founding member of both the Monteagle Rotary Club and the Monteagle Mountain Chamber of Commerce. He was chairman of the Grundy County Library Board for nine years, spearheading the building of the addition to the May Justus Memorial Library in Monteagle and the improvement of the Tracy City Public Library facility. He also guided the six county libraries through the transition to the electronic age, helping them "get connected" and assisting in enrolling the libraries in the Bill and Melinda Gates computer program. More recently, he volunteered as technical advisor to the Journalism Club at Monteagle Elementary School. Cam was very active in Morton Memorial United Methodist Church. In addition to editing and producing the church newsletter for several years and continuing to serve as guest contributor, he served as treasurer of the church. He also assisted the church through the joys of embracing computer technology. Cam had many interests. He loved telling stories and writing and was an avid model railroader. Cam always had a model railroad in progress, perhaps never finished, because he was constantly making improvements. His latest project, interrupted in mid course when he was hospitalized in early January, was to recreate, in his converted study, an N Scale layout of the Mountain Goat line of the NC&StL (later L&N, later CSX) Railroad, from Cowan to Monteagle and Tracy City. Cam was an avid supporter of the Cowan Railroad Museum and several of his HO Scale engines and cars, some dating back to layouts he created in the early 1950s, can be seen on display at the museum. The family is planning a memorial service, to be held 2:00 P.M. at Morton Memorial United Methodist church February 12. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to one of the following: Morton Memorial United Methodist Church (322 West Main St, Monteagle, TN 37356), Cowan Railroad Museum (108 Front Street South, Cowan, TN 37318), Monteagle Elementary School (120 East Main St., Monteagle, TN 37356), Leamis (c/o Lorena's, 922 West Main St, Monteagle, TN 37356), Gospel Partners (c/o Weaver, 530 Littell Lake Road, Tracy City, TN 37387), May Justus Memorial Library (PO Box 78, Monteagle, TN 37356) or Mountain TOP (480 Old Highway 56, Coalmont, TN 37313). Funeral arrangements are made by Cumberland Funeral Home, 207 Mabee Avenue, Monteagle, Tennessee 37356, (931) 924- 2381.