Category Archives: Faculty and Staff

Paul Luikart, Former Faculty

It is with a deep sadness that I report the passing of longtime former faculty member Paul Luikart this past weekend after his long battle with cancer.

As many of you may know, Paul officially retired from Williston at the end of the 2021 academic year, following remote work during the heart of the pandemic. At last year’s year-end faculty and staff celebration, Jen Fulcher captured the breadth of his legacy, built from a career at Williston that began in 1997, teaching science in both the upper and middle schools and coaching judo for many years. As she said, “Paul’s passion for science and teaching are what got him out of bed every morning. No matter what the day before threw at him, he would make his way across campus to the Middle School. He had to be there to show those kids how amazing and fun life and science are.”

In his subject area, chemistry, Paul was encyclopedic, but his interests and life experience revealed a Renaissance scholar’s breadth of knowledge, and he was an absolutely devoted mentor to his students and advisees. A Vermonter to the core, Paul’s presence on campus was unmistakable and it did not take much to elicit his broad smile by asking him about a canoe trip or fishing expedition.

For most of the past decade, Paul taught exclusively in Whitaker-Bement, and so there are many current upper school day students who will have known him well and seen him teach despite days of obvious discomfort. As former Dean of Faculty Peter Valine stated so succinctly, “It was a privilege to know Paul and always inspiring to watch him teach.”

We will post a full obituary when one becomes available. In the meantime, I know I speak for so many of his friends, colleagues, and former students in saying that all of Williston extends our deepest sympathy and support to his daughter Bella ’16 and to Paul’s extended family.

Sincerely,
Robert W. Hill III, P’15, ’19
Head of School

Richard B. Covell, P’70, former trustee

Richard B. Covell, 87, of Yarmouthport, MA, died Saturday April 22, 2017, after a brief period of declining health.

He was the husband of the late Helen Ruth (Powers) Covell who died in 2009. They had been married for 57 years.

Born in Ware, Mr. Covell was the son of the late Bertram M. and Ruth Mae (Launier) Covell. He was a graduate of Becker College and the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and completed graduate studies at The Graduate School of Banking, Brown University and The Management Development School at Dartmouth College.

His professional career, spanning 42 years, was spent in banking and he retired in August 1992 as CEO of Heritage Bank. In 1966 he was elected Vice President of Northampton Institution for Savings and elected President in 1968. The bank merged with Heritage Bank in 1986 and acquired Community Savings Bank of Holyoke in 1986. The combined organization had 29 offices in Franklin, Hampshire, and Hampden counties with assets exceeding $1.5 billion.

He was active in community affairs and served as Trustee of The Clarke School for 38 years, Treasurer of Look Park for 27 years, Treasurer of Applewood Living Care Community and Member of the Development Committee of Cooley Dickinson Hospital. He also served as Trustee of Calvin Coolidge Memorial Foundation, and Trustee of Northampton School for Girls and was instrumental in the merger with Williston Academy which would then become Williston-Northampton School. As Chair of the Northampton Development Committee, he worked aggressively to promote and maintain the downtown and keep Hotel Northampton as a focal point. In 1983, Mr. Covell received the Northampton Chamber of Commerce Citizen of the Year award. He was past President of Northampton Rotary Club and in 1988 was named a Paul Harris Fellow, Rotary’s highest honor for “service above self.” He was also a life member of Northampton Elks Lodge BPOE 997.

Mr. Covell is survived by his three children Jane S. Keeney ’70 and her husband, Normand of Avon CT, Richard B. Covell, Jr. and his wife, Maureen of Plymouth, and Joan C. Cooper and her husband Herb of Arlington, VA; his four grandchildren, Jennifer Keeney-Bleeg and her husband, Jim, of Bristol, England, Jeffrey A. Keeney and his wife, Jenny of Chicago, IL, Richard B. Covell, III and Eric J. Covell, both of Plymouth; and his two great grandchildren, Elliott and Julian Bleeg, both of Bristol, England. Also remembered with love and kindness is his longtime friend, Claire F. Rodrigues.

Brian A. Crockett, Faculty

0068-_3A_1287Brian A. Crockett, affectionately known as “Bubblez,” was born on January 20, 1992 in Paterson, NJ to Brenda (Williams) Crockett (deceased) and Franklin D. Crockett, Jr. He was a lifelong, active member of the Mt. Zion Baptist Church in Passaic NJ. His love of the Lord prepared him for life.

Brian graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Rutherford, NJ and Colgate University in Hamilton, NY. Most recently he joined the staff at Williston Northampton School in Massachusetts, teaching history and global studies and of course, coaching football, wrestling and track.

Brian was predeceased by his mother, Brenda; his grandmother, Annie M. Williams and his grandfather, Franklin D. Crockett, Sr. Brian loved unconditionally with great emotion and assurance and his memories will be forever in our hearts. He is greatly missed by his father, Frank D. Crockett, Jr. (Passaic, NJ); grandmother, Julia Crockett (Passaic, NJ); grandfather, Roger Williams (Castalia, NC) his God-appointed mommy, Francine Wise and Uncle Joseph Wise (Passaic, NJ); two sisters, Kelsea Crockett (Brooklyn, NY) and Latoya Bradshaw (Paterson, NJ); four great-aunts – Lois Smith (Passaic, NJ), Rosalee Neal (Bellevue, NE), Dorothy Crockett (Rutherford, NJ) and Gwendolyn Robinson (Clifton, NJ); two great-uncles – Talmadge Crockett (Hackensack, NJ) and Alonzo Moore (Passaic, NJ); six aunts – Lucy Williams (Castalia, NC), Lillie Hill (Durham, NC) Polly Adu (Union, NJ), Sherry Burton (Wendell, NC), Cornelia Bordeaux (Columbus, GA), Mazell Williams (Brooklyn, NY); five uncles – John Williams (Clifton, NJ), Mack Williams (Fort Worth, TX),Henry Williams (Vacaville, CA), Melvin Williams (Abilene, TX), Herman Williams (Alexandria, VA); two nephews – Jas’mir Taylor and DeShawn Stewart (Paterson, NJ); Godparents – Lillian McKay (Paterson, NJ), Joyce Alston (Louisburg, NC) and Arthur Miller (Clifton, NJ); cousin/brother, Branden Alston (Passaic, NJ); best friend/brother, Justyn Cruz (Orlando, FL) and a host of aunties, uncles, cousins, friends and the Mt. Zion Baptist Church family.

His favorite scripture is found in Psalms 31: 1-5.

Edward J. Chmura, Current Staff

Edward J. Chmura (1956 – 2013)

HATFIELD – Edward J. Chmura, 56, of 11 Scotland Road, passed away suddenly Monday, March 25, 2013, at home.

Born Aug. 29, 1956, in Northampton, he was the son of Mildred (Novak) Chmura and the late Eugene Chmura.  Ed grew up in Hadley but also spent much time in Hatfield farming with his family.

In 1974, he graduated from Hopkins Academy. He later earned an associate’s degree in accounting from Holyoke Community College.

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