Distinguished Alumnus
Class of 2017

Raymond Arthur (Art) Beazley
(September 27, 1941 – October 30, 2011)

AHS Class of 1959

Art Beazley was a leader at Arcola High School and a respected leader in his profession, who often spoke of his love for his home town and the opportunities afforded him as a young man in Arcola. Raymond Arthur “Art” Beazley, the first of two sons of Raymond and Elizabeth “Betty” Goode Beazley, was born September 27, 1941, at Tuscola, IL. After living in Arcola and Charleston, IL, the Beazley family settled in Arcola as Art began third grade. Art’s father was employed at newspaper businesses and his mother was a longtime secretary in the Arcola Elementary School. Art was a member of Arcola Presbyterian Church and studied piano under the guidance of Corinne Munson.

At Arcola High School, Beazley was a standout, serving as president of his class, Student Council and Band. He was a four-year honor student, assistant editor of the yearbook and sports editor for Arco-Lite. In Arcola athletics, Art was a three-year member of the Letterman’s Club, participating in basketball, track and football. He quarterbacked the undefeated 1957 Okaw Valley champion football team and was co-captain of the team his senior year. Art sang with the Chorus, was an alto saxophone soloist in both Band and Dance Band and also participated in his senior class play. He was chosen his senior class Homecoming escort and received the SAR award for the Class of 1959.

Following his high school graduation, Art enrolled at the University of Illinois to study engineering. While at Illinois, he was a research assistant in the Civil Engineering Department, a student representative for University Concert and Entertainment Board and met many concert performers and other entertainers as the personnel manager of Star Course. His summer employment included jobs at USI Chemical Company and Armco Steel Corporation. Art joined the R.O.T.C. program and was a member of Beta Theta Pi social fraternity. His honorary and technical societies included Chi Epsilon, Sigma Tau, Omicron Delta Kappa and American Society of Civil Engineers. Art completed his B.S. in Civil Engineering in June 1963. He and Linda Stump, his junior-high and high-school sweetheart, were then married in the Arcola Methodist Church June 29, 1963, prior to Linda’s senior year at the University of Illinois. Linda completed her B.F.A. in Art Education in 1964, while Art continued his education at the University of Illinois, earning his M.S. in Civil Engineering with a perfect GPA in February 1965.

The Beazleys moved to Parsippany, NJ, in 1965, where Art began his career in the Civil and Marine Engineering Department for Esso at Florham Park, NJ. He first designed large marine terminals for supertankers utilized throughout the world and was later granted a patent for his design of a single point mooring arm for large oil tankers. Their first son, Raymond Mark, was born in 1965 and daughter Maresa in 1968 after the family moved to West Caldwell, NJ. Art served as construction engineer during a four-month assignment for Esso Eastern at their oil refinery in Okinawa, Japan, in 1971-1972. The Beazley family next made Bridgewater, NJ, their home and son Donald Brian was born in 1973. They relocated to Houston, TX, for eight months in 1976-1977, where Art worked as an analyst for Exxon USA, formerly branded Esso. After returning to New Jersey, he became division manager of Computing and Information Systems. Art was named Risk Management Systems manager 1994-1996, following the devastating 1989 oil spill of the Exxon Valdez. He traveled internationally to all seventeen Exxon affiliates during the three-year period. Art and Linda relocated to Toronto in 1997, where he managed the engineering office for Imperial Oil, Canada’s Exxon, prior to his retirement in 2000.

Art and Linda made Travelers Rest, SC, their retirement home. Art had served as deacon at Caldwell Presbyterian Church in West Caldwell, NJ, and then became a member at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Travelers Rest. He was a Meals on Wheels volunteer and also chaired the Safety and Security Committee in their Cliffs Valley community. Art became a committed classroom volunteer as he challenged math students each week for eight years at Slater Marietta Elementary School in Marietta, SC. His retirement provided more time for family, friends, golf, reading and traveling, as well as playing the piano each day.

When Art was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in 2010, he met the challenge with courage, grace and a strong faith, never losing his sense of humor and never complaining to family or friends. Since junior high school, he and Linda shared more than fifty-seven years together before his passing on October 30, 2011. Art led an exemplary life for his children, Mark, Maresa and Brian, his six grandchildren and all who knew him.

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Last Revision November 11, 2017