Major General Stuart Haynsworth, United States Air Force
(Retired) was born in Columbia, South Carolina and "flew his last great mission" prophetically on the 66th Anniversary of D Day, Monday, the 6th of June 2011, locked arm in arm with his daughter at his Houston home.
As he often stated, "age is just a number, and mine is unlisted." For many wonderful and exciting years, he was married to architectural designer, Elizabeth Drane Bartell Haynsworth, notably the designer of the beautiful mosaic floor in the main entrance of Hobby Airport.
General Haynsworth earned his BBA from Fenn College - currently Cleveland State University, and his Doctor of Juris Prudence from the University Of Houston Bates College Of Law. He was a member of the American, Texas and Houston Bar Associations. He was captain of his high school basketball team and he was on the varsity tennis team in college. He was a fabulous golfer and totally devoted to the sport. In general he was a very gifted athlete and dancer.
General Haynsworth was a practicing Certified Public Accountant when he enlisted in the Army
Air Corp in January of 1942. During World War II
, serving in England, he was an instructor in the Advanced Flying School and in Central Instructor's School, flying virtually all of the U. S. fighter aircraft, including the P-38, P-39, P-40, P-47, P-51, P-63, F-4, F-7, F-80, and F-111 for a total of over 5,000 flying hours. In addition to being an instructor, General Haynsworth was a fighter pilot flying 50 assigned combat missions and an additional 25 volunteer missions with the famed 56th Fighter Group of the 8th Air Force flying P-47 Thunderbolts in Europe. He had three confirmed aerial victories and shared another with his wingman. He destroyed five German Heinkel 111K aircraft on the ground in one mission. He had a "very educational experience" in a dogfight with a German ME 262 jet (one of the first jet engines produced) in September of 1944.
The General served thirty-three years in the Air Force Reserve, and was Vice-commander of the 446th Airlift Wing at Ellington Air Force Base in Houston, and Assistant to the commander of Tactical Air Command, western U. S. when he retired from the Air Force Reserves in 1977 at a ceremony at Bergstrom Air Force Base in Austin. He performed the reserve officer duties, all while maintaining a full time career as an attorney and CPA in Houston.
His last assignment at Bergstrom Air Force Base in Austin provided the opportunity to drive to Austin one weekend per month. He was known to have a heavy foot on the gas pedal, and could make the trip in 1 hour and 45 minutes from his central Houston home. He was once brought to the judge for his speeding, where he expressed that he could have made the trip much faster, had he not been stopped by the police!
General Haynsworth was a long-time member of the Houston Chamber of Commerce Military Affairs Committee of Houston and the Reserve Officers Association. He also served in Washington D. C. on the Air Reserve Policy council and on the staff of the War College at Ft. Leslie McNair. He conceived and helped initiate the program rotating reserve crews and their own aircraft providing fighters and airlift forces abroad integrated with our regular forces during the cold war and thereafter.
General Haynsworth was the first of just two Houston area Air Force Reserve officers to attain the rank of Major General and the only holder of the Distinguished Service Medal, in addition to the Distinguished Flying Cross, Eight Air Medals, and other decorations.
General Haynsworth was a member of Christ Church Cathedral, the Houston Grand Opera Guild, the Museum of Fine Arts, and the Houston Symphony Society. He served as president of the Edgemont Civil Club. He also served also as President of the English Speaking Union and he was a huge supporter of the University of Houston Cougars, having four seats on the fifty-yard line for close to fifty years.
The General wrote the renewal deed restrictions for Edgemont and West Edgemont, preserving indefinitely the residential character of two of Houston's most historic and beautiful streets. He received recognition from the Bar Association and the Texas Board of Public Account Association for his over fifty years of practice in each. He maintained an office in the Esperson building downtown for over fifty years. With his wife Elizabeth, he traveled the world, experiencing many of the world's most fabulous and interesting cultures.
The General had the most wonderful sense of humor and always had a funny story to go with whatever subject he was discussing.
His quick wit and charm will be sorely missed by his family, his friends and his neighbors. He was predeceased by his first wife, Bette Worth Sloan; second wife, Elizabeth; step-daughter, Jacqueline Bartel Tapp; mother, Louise Getz; sister, Shirley Whiteman; and brother, Gerry Getz.
He is survived by his daughter, Kristen Haynsworth of Houston; his granddaughter, Sloan Haynsworth Leger and her husband, Kevin Leger; and his great grandson, Hunter Haynsworth Leger, all of Austin. He is also survived by his sister and brother-in-law, Joanne and Art Schupska of Geneva, Ohio. Additionally, he is survived by Frances and Felix Tapp, Meg and Filson Tapp, Bartell Tapp, Lee and Glenn Seureau, Becky and Cliff Chatham, Claudia and John Polsgrove, Donette and Joe Drane, Janet Drane, Kay and Russel Drane, Georgia and Harvey Dyer, Mark Schupska, Gary Schupska, Janet Musante, and Jon Whiteman; as well as many other great nieces and great nephews.
"Our family extends thanks and appreciation to his wonderful neighbors and friends who always expressed so much concern and devotion to him. We also wish to thank the lovely and caring group of ladies that took such great care of him and made certain all his needs were met, no matter what time of the day or night. Thank you, Billie Witter, Thelma Thomas, Linda Noel and Beverly Pearson. You not only provided love and support to the General, you showed outstanding support and love to those closest to him."
Friends are cordially invited to a visitation with the family from half-past five o'clock in the afternoon until eight o'clock in the evening on Thursday, the 9th of June, in the Library and Grand Foyer of Geo. H. Lewis & Sons, 1010 Bering Drive in Houston.
The funeral service is to be conducted at ten o'clock in the morning on Friday, the 10th of June, at Christ Church Cathedral, 1117 Texas Avenue in Houston, where the Very Rev. Joe D. Reynolds, Dean, the Rev. James C. McGill, Canon Missioner, and the Rev. Lucrecia "Luchy" Littlejohn, Canon Pastor, are to officiate.
A military interment service is to immediately follow, via an escorted cortege, at Forest Park Lawndale Cemetery in Houston, where United States Air Force Honors are to be rendered by an honor guard from Randolph AFB.
For those desiring, in lieu of customary remembrances, contributions in memory of General Haynsworth may be directed to Christ Church Cathedral, 1117 Texas Ave., Houston, TX, 77002; Christus Visiting Nurses Association (VNA) Hospice, 601 Sawyer St., Suite 750, Houston, TX, 77007; or to the University of Houston, Athletics Dept., 3100 Cullen Blvd, Suite 2004, Houston, TX, 77204-6002.
"Off we go into the wild blue yonder,
Climbing high into the sun;
Here they come zooming to meet our thunder,
At 'em boys, Give 'er the gun!
Down we dive, spouting our flame from under
Off with one helluva roar!
We live in fame or go down in Flame - Hey!
Nothing will stop the U. S. Air Force."
Published in Houston Chronicle on June 8, 2011