Waldo Beaman Cummings, 93, died in his home at 6 Church Street, West Boylston, MA on March 29, 2011 as the sun set at 7:10 pm. He was born in Springfield, MA, on May 14, 1917 to Charles H. Cummings, Thompson, CT and Gladys M. Howe Cummings, West Boylston, MA.
He graduated from Amherst College, Amherst, MA, in 1938 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in economics and mathematics. In 1939 he was employed by the Inland Steel Company at its coal properties headquarters in Wheelwright, KY as an administrative clerk. His working career was interrupted by service in the U S Army during World War II from June 5, 1942 to December 25, 1945. He was drafted in 1942, but was selected for Officer Candidate School and was discharged as a First Lieutenant after service in the 542nd Engineer Boat and Shore Regiment as its Adjutant. His unit had Amphibious landing craft and conducted assaults all along the New Guinea coastline and took part in the recapture of the Philippines. He was in the Pacific theater of operations for over 32 months. His awards included the Asiatic Pacific service ribbon with two stars, Invasion Arrowhead for an opposed landing, and Philippines Liberation ribbon with one star.
After World War II he returned to Inland’s Kentucky coal headquarters as Cost Accounting Clerk, was promoted in 1950 to assistant manager Mine Accounting and in 1955 was made Manager Mine Accounting. In 1959 he was transferred to Caland Ore Co. Ltd. Inland’s Canadian subsidiary near Atikokan, Ontario, Canada. He served as treasurer and assistant secretary of that company until 1975 when he was transferred to Virginia, MN and promoted to comptroller of Inland Steel Mining Company. He retired from Inland Steel Company on May 1, 1981 after 42 years of service. In addition to his career, he had a life- long passion for golf and curling.
He was very active as a member of Kiwanis International for over 42 years and served as LT Governor of Districts in KY and MN and Governor of the Western Canada District. He was a member of the Administrative Management Society, having served as director and president. He was also active with the Atikokan Chamber of Commerce, the Red Cross and other professional and community organizations. In West Boylston, MA, he was a member of the First Congregational Church, American Legion Post 204 and was a direct descendant of Ezra Beaman, the founder of the town of West Boylston.
He was predeceased in 1981 by his wife, Esther Blackburn of Wheelwright, KY and his second wife, Lois Minteer, in 2005. He has two sons, Waldo Beaman, Jr and wife, Pam, of West Boylston, MA and Warren Bradford and wife, Cathy, of Fairbanks, Alaska. Four grand children, Christina and Elizabeth of Alaska and Waldo Beaman, III and Stacey Shepherd of Virginia. He has one great granddaughter, Shelby Shepherd of Stafford, Virginia. He is also survived by his brother, Richard H. Cummings, 90, of Beverly Hills , MI and his sister, Elizabeth M. Cummings, 92, of West Boylston, MA.
A funeral service will be held at the First Congregational Church of West Boylston, 26 Central St. at 11 a.m. on Friday, April 1, 2011, followed by burial in the family plot in the Mt Vernon Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family request donations be made to the First Congregational Church, 26 Central Street, West Boylston, Ma 01583 or the American Legion Post 204, 159 Hartwell St., West Boylston, MA 01583. Arrangements are in the care of FAY BROTHERS FUNERAL HOME, 1 W. Boylston St., West Boylston. www.faybrothers.com