Dr. Walter V. Powell,
Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Slippery
Rock University, died at the VNA Hospice in Butler,
PA on February 27th after a short illness. He was
90. Born on January 6, 1929 in New York City, the
son of Walter and Estelle Powell, he attended
Manhattan Aviation High School and enlisted in the
United States Air Force at the end of WWII. After
military service he enrolled on the G.I. Bill at the
University of Connecticut, completing both a B.A.
and M.A. in History, and later in his career, a J.D.
from Western New England College Law School and a
Ph.D. from the University of Sarasota.
Dr. Powell taught for 44 years in the Political
Science Department at Slippery Rock University,
serving for a time as Department Chair, and for many
years as the Pre-Law Advisor for students
considering a legal career. He also maintained a
small private law practice in Slippery Rock and was
an active member of the Butler County Bar
Association, and the Slippery Rock Rotary Club.
Outside of his academic and legal career, he was
well known for his passion for military aviation. He
loved airplanes--being very proud of the fact that
on a modest budget he put together a fine collection
that formed the nucleus of a museum he called "The
Western PA Aviation Museum" near Mercer. He was an
active member of the Civil Air Patrol, the
Experimental Aircraft Association (EAA), the Valiant
Air Command in Titusville, Florida, the 8th Air
Force Historical Society, and was a feature writer
for Warbirds Magazine.
Above all, he loved his family, and he will be
sorely missed by his loving wife of 49 years, the
former Nancy Reynolds, his four children, Dr. Walter
Powell and his wife Susan of Plymouth, MA, Cassandra
Fell and her husband Gordon of Pollington, East
Yorkshire, England, Grace Hajave and her husband
Ramin of Grove City, PA, and Alexander Powell of
Atlanta, Georgia, his nine grandchildren, and three
great-grandchildren. He was pre-deceased by his
sister Barbara St. John and brothers Richard and
Donald Powell, and a stepson, Donald N. Skelton.
Memorial Services will be held at the United
Methodist Church in Slippery Rock on Saturday, March
9th at 11 AM with interment at the convenience of
the family. In lieu of flowers, memorial
contributions may be made to the Slippery Rock
University Foundation, Inc., earmarked for the
Pre-Law Student Scholarship Fund.
Arrangements were handled by the Thompson - Miller
Funeral Home, Inc., 124 East North Street, Butler,