William Clifton Stuckey Jr.
May 19, 1923 – January 25, 2020
A native North Carolinian and only child, Bill grew up in Goldsboro, NC, where his father owned a community grocery store and his mother was a homemaker.
He began attending classes at NCSU but his education was interrupted by his service in the Army Air Corps during WWII. He served in the Army Air Corps from 1943 to 1946, where he rose to the rank of 2nd Lt. In April of 1944, he got permission to come home on leave to marry his sweetheart, Celeste Nelms.
After graduating from flight school in 1944, he became a B26 pilot in charge of a crew. He did not love the war, but he loved flying. He said that there was no other feeling like it – being up in the “wild blue yonder,” flying in and out of the clouds. For the rest of his life, he never tired of telling his stories about flying a B26.
After the war he returned home to finish his education at NCSU and graduated in 1955 with an M.S. in Textile Technology. He remained at NCSU, and as a graduate student began teaching classes. His career at NCSU spanned 37 years from 1952 to 1989 when he retired as a full professor.
Bill was very proud of his family, and loved to have his whole family (children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren) gather for holiday lunches at the NC State University Club where he was a charter member. He never met a stranger and loved to talk to people. Many years ago, this knack for making friends turned into a standing Friday lunch date with people he had met while eating at the Cameron Village K&W Cafeteria.
He is survived by his wife and sweetheart of 75 years, Celeste Nelms Stuckey. They are long-time members of Western Boulevard Presbyterian Church in Raleigh.
He is survived by three daughters; Bonnie Stuckey Van Hoy (Rick), Dee Stuckey (Steve Hall), and Amy Stuckey; and preceded in death by his son, William Clifton Stuckey, III (Cheryl). He is survived by 6 grandchildren and 7 great-grandchildren.
A family graveside service with military honors was held on Thursday, January 30, at 2:00 p.m., at Raleigh Memorial Park.
Isaiah 40:31 – But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
- Graveside Service Thursday, January 30, 2020
William Clifton Stuckey Jr.
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February 2, 2020
Whenever Lynette & I visited Raleigh to see my parents, my Dad, Peter, would always take us to the lunch meetings at K&W, where we met Bill, and some of Dads other colleagues and friends.
Bill always seemed to the first there!
Bill & I would spend nearly all the time talking aviation, he with his extensive experience flying bombers and mine flying the modern jets. He was always asking questions about the technical details.
I recall that Dad said that Bill was a stickler for accuracy, and that was probably a major factor in him surviving the war, that and a lot of luck of course.
A lovely man, who was happy to talk about his experiences, which I treasure.
Sue & Danny sent me a lovely description of the funeral, and it sounds as though he had a good and fitting send off, may he rest in peace.
January 31, 2020
So many wonderful memories Danny and I will have of our lunches with Bill at the K&W. It went on for many years. We so enjoyed hearing the many fascinating stories from his
time in the service, and particularly about his experiences flying the B-26 Maurauder.
(We learned it earned the nickname "the widow maker" because it was difficult to fly
and crashed a lot...not very comforting!) Also, stories of his childhood helping out in his father's grocery store took us back in time....like penny candies in jars on the countertop.
Bill loved to talk, which sometimes interfered with eating his lunch. We all knew we could count on being finished eating long before he had hardly begun. Lunch time went on for quite some time, but it was fun and Bill so enjoyed it.
He was a wonderful, sweet fellow who loved his friends and his family. We will miss him; we will not forget him.
January 29, 2020
Peace to you, cousins, as you celebrate W. C.'s life.
Much love, Caroline Wiggs
John Henry Wiggs Jr's grand-daughter
Jon Lee and Mary Alice Wiggs' daughter
Carroll Belk Wiggs' grand niece