W. Shorter

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 8, 2009

W. Wyatt Shorter
CAMDEN, Ala.—Walter Wyatt Shorter, 76, retired president of MacMillan Bloedel Inc, died March 30, 2009, at his home, with his family by his side, in Camden, Ala., after a 17-year battle with cancer.
Mr. Shorter was born on May 20, 1932, in New York, N.Y.
He was the son of Walter C. Shorter (the Colonel) and Evelyn Noska Shorter. A polio survivor as a young child, he graduated in 1949 from the Fishburne Military Academy in Waynesboro.
He entered the Virginia Military Institute and attained the rank of Company Commander, C Company in 1953 with a bachelor’s degree in chemistry.
He was commissioned an officer in the United States Marine Corps rising to the rank of captain.
He served his country admirably on multiple military campaigns with the Marine Corps.
On completion of his service in the Corps, he attended the University of Maine, earning a Master of Science in Pulp and Paper Science and Chemical Engineering.
He was inducted into Tau Beta Pi and the prestigious Society of the Sigma Xi for his research related to Zeta potential.
At Maine he met his lifelong bride, Gayle Prince, of Castleton, N.Y. and they were married soon after his graduation in 1957.
He spent his entire career in the paper industry.
He worked for Union Camp Corporation for 21 years rising to vice president and resident manager of the Prattville, Ala. mill.
He was a pioneer in the development of recycled paper use in corrugated containers, which is in wide use today.
He was national president of the Paper Industry Management Association in 1971, president of the Alabama State Chamber of Commerce from 1975 to 1976, chairman of the Alabama Alliance of Business and Industry, director of the Fourdrinier Kraft Board Group and a member of the Alabama Council on Economic Education.
In 1978, he accepted the position of president of MacMillan Bloedel, Inc, moving his family to Camden.
He led the successful and transformative expansion of MacMillan Bloedel in Pine Hill, Ala. He was also a strong advocate and supporter of local communities, with a particularly focus on local school systems and the J. Paul Jones Hospital in Camden.
He served on the boards of First Alabama Bankshares, Jenkins Brick Corporation, The Nature Conservancy of Alabama, a trustee of Huntingdon College and a member of the “13” in Montgomery.
He retired from MacMillan Bloedel in 1993 to his home on the Alabama River in Camden, devoting the remainder of his life entirely to his wife, five children, eleven grandchildren, St. Paul’s church in Carlowville, Ala., and the Black Belt Ministry as well as an occasional trip to fish on the river.
He was a Lay leader in the Episcopal Church for over 50 years.
He was an inspiration to all who met him for his courage in the face of the many cancers he faced, his unfailing love for his family, and the mentorship and guidance he provided to all who knew him. Wyatt was a true servant leader. The most apt quote of his life comes from the Camden City Council Resolution honoring him in 2008, “Wyatt Shorter is a man who has given outstanding service and devotion to his country, his church, his family and his career.”
Wyatt is predeceased by his father, Walter Clarence Shorter of Callands, Virginia, his mother Evelyn Noska Shorter of Thomaston, ME, his brother Leon Forest Douglas, III of Paris, France and his sister Margaret Shorter Morfeld of New York, NY. He is survived by his wife of 51 years, Gayle Prince Shorter of Castleton, NY, his children Walter Wyatt Shorter Jr. (spouse Debbie) of Germantown, TN, Margaret Shorter Robinson (spouse Lonnie) of Ozark, AL, Mathew Peasley Shorter (spouse Sara Kate) of Camden, AL, Lt. Cmdr. John David Shorter, USN (Ret) (spouse Michelle) of Simpsonville, SC, and Charles Christopher Shorter (spouse Troie-Beth) of Mobile, AL. He is also survived by his grandchildren, whom he adored: Mary Margaret Wadsworth, Samantha Glenn Shorter, Margaret Ashley Shorter, Emily Wyatt Shorter, Katherine Gibbs Shorter, Jackson Sean Ours, Olivia Grace Shorter, Noelle Elizabeth Shorter, Calder Christopher Shorter, Davis Troy Shorter, and Maggie-Alisabeth Gayle Shorter. He is also survived by his nephews Jeffery Douglas and Edward Morfeld.
A visitation will be held at the Camden United Methodist Church on Friday, April 10th, from 6 pm to 8 pm. Funeral services will be held at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Carlowville, AL, on Saturday, April 11th at 11:00 a.m. with The Rev. Louie Skipper and the Rev. Mark E. Waldo officiating and Dunklin & Daniels Funeral Home directing. Graveside services with full military honors will be held in the church cemetery following the funeral services. The members of the “13” will be honorary pallbearers.
The family would like to express sincere thanks for the overwhelming support shown to Mr. Shorter and the family in these last few months. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made in memory of Mr. Shorter to the Montgomery Cancer Center, 4145 Carmichael Road, Montgomery, AL, 36106, or to the Virginia Military Institute Memorial Fund for Wyatt Shorter, Neikirk Hall, Lexington, VA, 24450.
Online condolences may be made at www.dunklinanddaniels.com.