Powell impacted thousands

Published 6:12 pm Friday, September 15, 2017

Dear Editor,

Writing about the loss of my long-time friend Stuart Powell is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Our community has lost a giant among local leaders.

Through decades of commitment to Danville, Boyle County and central Kentucky, we were all recipients of Stuart’s Chrisitan spirit. He had a unique ability to reach out to all, no matter their circumstances. That kind nature was especially noted in a story told during his funeral.

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Stuart’s pastor, on a visit to see JoAnn at McDowell Place, eased into the room to find JoAnn with Stuart, both fast asleep holding hands. He left quietly without disturbing them. That thought touched the hearts of us all.

Known for impeccable integrity, Stuart Powell walked a path everyone should aspire to achieve. He was one of the greatest businessmen, family men and citizens I’ve ever known. So modest, few knew the depth of his charitable side. Recalling how Stuart always made time for his friends, visiting his shop for service one day he invited me in for a chat. After a while and knowing he had business to attend to, I offered to leave. Insisting I stay, we talked for an hour.

Danville and Boyle County can forever thank Mr. Powell for our remarkable regional airport. Expansion of air travel under decades of his leadership has been instrumental in bringing wonderful entertainment to Norton Center for the Arts. Perhaps of greatest importanct to local aviation, Stuart’s airport leadership was instrumental in bringing two vice-presidential debates to Centre College and Danville.

Our community without Stuart Powell will certainly go on and prosper. We will eventually move beyond the sting of his loss. But Heaven has just received one of our finest, one whose earthly deeds will never be forgotten.

May God bless Mr. Powell’s family and his friends who number into the thousands as we reflect on a man for all seasons.

George Cunningham