Amherst Magazine
Calvin S. West, Jr. '54

It is with deep sadness that I write of the death of Calvin S. West, Jr., 77, on Nov. 8, 2009, of a sudden heart attack.

Cal was a close friend with whom I spent many happy times at the Phi Delta house and shared many Amherst Reunions, the last being our 55th. During our Amherst years, we spent four years rowing together on the crew, and together again, we enjoyed exploring the western states in the summer of 1953, camping out most of the way. I knew him as a very kind and compassionate man.

After ROTC at Amherst, Cal served in the U.S. Air Force. An educator thereafter for 25 years, Cal taught at Fayetteville-Manlius High School and was department chairman for the special needs education program. When he retired from active teaching, he worked at St. Joseph Hospital before final retirement a few years ago.

An avid music fan, he loved classical and organ music, but I personally know he also enjoyed jazz and Chicago-style blues. He never missed a jazz festival. A season ticket holder at the Syracuse Opera, he dabbled at playing the guitar and piano.

Family and friends were very important to Cal. Unfortunately, Cal was predeceased by his first wife, Julie, but found a wonderful companion in Sharon.  He enjoyed the beautiful Caribbean beaches in Mexico and Puerto Rico and also spent many happy times at a family camp near Old Forge in the Adirondack Mountains.

Survivors include his wife Sharon, son Tim, daughter Amy, brother Richard, granddaughters Rachel and Ansel, step-granddaughters Melissa Lovetere and Sara Lehtonen-Alber and step-grandchildren Francesca Lovetere, Makayla and Lucas Alber.

A double legacy, Cal was ever a loyal Amherst College alumnus. In remembrance, let us raise the rosy goblet high with a toast to Calvin West, my good friend and friend of many in our Class of 1954.

—Guy Wilbor ’54


 

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