- October 7, 1931 - January 19, 2013
- Hamden, Connecticut
of Lewis 's Passing
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Memories & CandlesPrevious
“Mr. Stephens (as I always knew him) was an inspirational teacher for me. I graduated in 1968, and his passion for art carried forward into my own art...Read More »
1 of 14 | Posted by: Robin Locke Monda - NYC, NY
I heard the news regarding your husband and I am so sorry. My prayers go out to you and if you every need anything myself and my husband...Read More »
2 of 14 | Posted by: Carmen - New Haven, CT
“Lou and I worked together in the '70s. He supported me as one of the new teachers at Hamden High School during my times of orientation. I shared...Read More »
3 of 14 | Posted by: Eva J. Spence-Johnson - TN
“Please accept my deepest sympathy.I just received the news. We were studio neighbors for over forty years.Hard to believe I will not hear Lew call...Read More »
4 of 14 | Posted by: joseph cifferelli - new haven, CT
We are saddened by Cousin Lewis' passing. Please know that you are all in our thoughts and prayers. Take Care, Be Encouraged, Be...Read More »
6 of 14 | Posted by: Carol (Price) Harris - NJ
"Blessed are those who mourn for they will be comforted" Matthew 5.4
With Sympathy and Prayers for you!
7 of 14 | Posted by: Shirley Farm - Hamden, CT
My thoughts are with you and your family.
8 of 14 | Posted by: Steve Fortes - New Haven, CT
“Mrs. Stephens and Family,
My most sincere sympathy on the passing of your dear husband.
I am a former student of Mr. Stephens from the early to...Read More »
9 of 14 | Posted by: Rosemary DeLizio Schaeffer - CT
“Lou Stephens was an outstanding teacher at Hamden High School. His relationships with students was always positive. Students liked his classes and...Read More »
10 of 14 | Posted by: Bill Collins - Hamden, CT
“Bro Lou,will be missed at the lodge always with an smile,he shared with me those things of helping people, would understand his talents and share...Read More »
11 of 14 | Posted by: Dgt helen c powell - New haven, CT
“In your time of grief, I would like to offer condolences on behalf of the Jones family...
12 of 14 | Posted by: Roland Bubba Jones - New Haven, CT
“To Alberta, my co-worker in the Bursar's Office at Yale University so long ago. I was sad to read of your loss and extend my condolences. What an...Read More »
13 of 14 | Posted by: nancyholton abbate - north haven, CT
“Alberta, Although I did not know your husband personally, I know you through your neice Alexis & the senior center. I am so truly sorry for your loss...Read More »
14 of 14 | Posted by: Vicki Draughn - colonial beach, VA
Lewis Henry Stephens, Jr., 81, of Hamden, Connecticut, died on Saturday, January 19, 2013 at the St. Raphael Campus of Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Lewis was born to Mae and Lewis Henry Stephens, Sr. in Atlantic City, New Jersey on October 7, 1931. He was the only son and the youngest, had two sisters, Gladys Stephens Tarboro, who predeceased him, and Fannie Stephens Freeman-Davis. At the early age of three, Lewis and his family moved to Pleasantville, New Jersey where he attended the Park Avenue School and graduated from Pleasantville High School. He then enlisted into the United States Army and received his honorable discharge. On August 29, 1964, he married Alberta Hilton, who was his devoted wife for 48 years, residing in Hamden, Connecticut.
At a young age, Lewis was baptized at the Mount Pleasant Baptist Church in Pleasantville where his immediate family attended. Lewis spent most of his formative years living in Pleasantville, New Jersey where he graduated from the Park Avenue School and Pleasantville High School. During Lewis' high school years, he ran track and played junior varsity football. He was also a member of the Pleasantville High School Choir and the Barron Social Club.
"Steve," as he was affectionately called, had a strong ambition to become a professional golfer. His interest and passion for golf was nurtured at Atlantic City Country Club that was established in 1897; first coined in 1903, the term "birdie," means one stroke under par. During the late 1950's and early 1960's, Steve caddied under the direction of the late John Turner and developed a close relationship with the late Leo Frasier, the Pro of the Country Club at the time who was also a former president of the Professional Golfers Association (PGA). Steve received a Robert Wood Platt College Scholarship that helped him finance his college education and establish his career as an artist. Steve later became the first African-American member of the Atlantic City Country Club where one of his landscape paintings graced one of the walls of the country club. His acceptance of the invitation for membership enabled him to join the list of the few African Americans who were being offered membership at predominately-white country clubs across the country during the early 1990's.
Steve received his B.S. degree from the University of Maryland-Eastern Shore (formerly Maryland State College) in 1958. He received a Master's degree from Southern Connecticut State University in 1970 and a second master's degree from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee in 1973.
Steve taught art and photography in Hamden Connecticut schools for 35 years. After graduating in 1958, Steve started his first teaching position as an art teacher at the Michael Whalen Junior High School in Hamden. He completed his career and retired as a teacher of art and photography at Hamden High School. One of his student's was a book cover designer for Viking & Dutton Books at the Penguin USA Publishing Company. In the Region Section of the New Haven Register, he stated that Steve was "probably the most influential art teacher I had in my teens." Steve also served as coach of both the student golf team and ski club at Hamden High School.
Steve's artwork was inspired by eclectic inspirations, ranging from landscapes to portraits; taking special interest in African and African-American Art very early in his career. His innovative work in this genre occupies a significant portion of his art collection. To aspiring artists, Steve expressed his words of advice: "I would tell them straight out; you have to be committed. It's lonely work, it's hard work."
Steve received an honorable discharge from the United States Army and was a member of the Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc., the Improved Benevolent Protective Order of the Elks of the World, New Haven, Connecticut, and the Connecticut PGA. He was also a member of the Wallingford Country Club, Wallingford, Connecticut.
Steve is pre-deceased by his parents, his elder sister Gladys, and his close nieces Stephanie Stephens and Michelle Brantley. He is survived by his wife, Alberta, his sister, Fannie of Pleasantville, and many nieces, nephews, relatives, and friends.