In Remembrance: David W. St. Clair ’55 Died on May 20 2023

David Willard St. Clair of Tarrytown, New York, and Siasconset, Massachusetts, died peacefully on Saturday, May 20, 2023, with family by his side. He was born in Erie, Pennsylvania, in 1933 and grew up in many cities and towns across the US. From Walnut Hills High School in Cincinnati he went on to Yale University, graduating magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa in 1955. After army service at Fort Devens, he earned an LLB with honors at Harvard Law School in 1961. His legal career was interrupted by call up to the army during the Berlin Crisis of 1961–62 when he served in intelligence. In 1963 he married Alexandrine Newlands. David joined Thomas J. Lipton Inc. in 1967 as general counsel, became secretary and director of Unilever United States, and rose to senior vice president for law and administration at Lipton before retiring in 1995. 

David enjoyed athletics and excelled at most sports which he played, including baseball, basketball, platform tennis, or his great passion, golf. At Yale he played first base (a lefty fielder) and is remembered for hitting a pitch over the outfield fence, down a stadium entry ramp and completely out of the venue. This feat had never been done before in the history of Yale baseball and there is no report to suggest it has been done since. Even though focusing primarily on his studies, he batted in the 400s and was invited to try out for the Cincinnati Reds. He enjoyed the constant challenge of golf and for decades he maintained a five handicap. In 1993 he was part of the winning amateur team at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic in Palm Springs, California.  He was invited to play in the event the following year and just missed defending the title. In 2009, with a hole in one at the Phelps Memorial Hospital annual fundraiser outing, he won two cars (Lexus and Jaguar) when both prizes were accidentally staged on the same par three. 

David discovered and developed a great love for Nantucket in 1955 when he was a summer waiter on island at the fabled Moby Dick Inn in Siasconset. He and Alix returned in 1964 for a summer vacation in Sconset and, with their family, enjoyed every summer there up until the present. David served on the board of Sankaty Head Golf Club for eleven years, eight of which as club secretary. He also was a four-year member of the board of Sleepy Hollow Country Club in Briarcliff Manor, New York, where he pursued his love of golf.

Most significantly he will be remembered as chairman of the Sankaty Head Lighthouse Committee of the ‘Sconset Trust, which moved and saved the lighthouse from inevitable destruction by the rapidly advancing erosion of the bluff it was situated on.

He is survived by his beloved wife of 59 years, Alix; his cherished sons, David Alexander St. Clair (Anne Ringwood Kelligrew) and Duncan Reid St. Clair; sister-in law Mary Anne Case; niece Peggy St. Clair (John Fitzgerald); nephew David Scott St. Clair; niece Alexandra Kay (Stephen Gleason); and his treasured granddaughters Peyton Charlotte St. Clair, Elizabeth Reid St. Clair, and Susan Margaret St. Clair. In lieu of flowers memorial gifts may be made to the Siasconset Union Chapel, PO Box 400, Siasconset, MA 02564.

—Submitted by the family.

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