Thursday, August 13, 2015

Carroll H. Staggs, Jr., 75, of Westminster

Carroll H. Staggs, Jr., 75, of Westminster

Carroll H. Staggs, Jr., 75, of Westminster, died unexpectedly early Saturday morning, August 1, 2015 at Carroll Hospital Center.

Coach Staggs was my Westminster Junior High School basketball coach and my science teacher. He was wonderful in both positions.

As a science teacher he helped instill and reinforce what would become a life-long interest in botany – and later horticulture. I later made a meager living farming by raising nursery stock and often thought of Coach Stagg’s science classes…

He was friendly, kind and passionate about his work and it was infectious.

As for basketball; I loved to play basketball but alas, in the end I was such a horrible basketball player that I later turned to wrestling for a winter sport in high school.

But I will always remember that he once put me in a basketball game in the old Taneytown High School gym. I was thrilled. Bill Fourhman passed the ball to Mark Causey who passed the ball to me and I scored a bucket. The only two points I ever scored in competitive high school basketball in my entire life. Thanks to the kindness and passion of Coach Staggs who put me in the game even when it was obvious that I could not dribble a basketball and breathe at the same time.

Visitation at the Myers Durboraw Funeral Home was quite hard. There were many pictures from the 1960s that caused a flood of memories of the Westminster I knew growing-up in the 1950s and 1960s. It was a friendly and affirming small town where we cared for each other and looked after each other. We were somewhat isolated and probably quite naive.

The war in Vietnam had not quite hit home and challenges of urban strife could only be found in the pages of the News American, or the Morning and Evening Sun – I was a Morning Sun person…

Westminster was a friendly and fun town unfettered by the hastiness of today’s day-to-day subsistence existence. This was long before the oustlanders– the newcomers - came to Westminster and Carroll County to call to our attention all our shortcomings and save us from ourselves. It was not a perfect town. There is no such thing. But my memories of growing-up in Westminster are perfect. And a legion of folks like Coach Staggs helped make it perfect.

According to Coach Staggs’ obituary:

Born December 6, 1939 in Cumberland, he was the son of the late Carroll H. Staggs, Sr. and Mary Fern Tressler Staggs.  He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Waltraut Flender Staggs.

Carroll was a graduate of Frostburg State Teachers College with a degree in Education and earned his Master’s Degree in Education from Frostburg. 

He loved teaching, and was a Science teacher at East and West Middle Schools for 38 years, where he coached middle school basketball. 

He was very passionate about his church and family and was a very active member of St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, serving as the Usher Coordinator, chair of the Worship and Witness Committee, Past President of the Consistory and rang the bell on Memorial Day.  

Carroll was very active in the Carroll County Education Association and was a representative of CCEA Retired Teachers.  He was a member of Carroll County Old Timers Baseball Association and was an avid sports fan of the Baltimore Orioles, Pittsburgh Pirates and attended many local high school and college basketball games. 

He was always looking out for others and was willing to lend a helping hand.  Other loves were spending time outdoors, tending to his garden, fishing and hunting.  He travelled on bus trips, attended dinner theatres, and enjoyed having breakfast with family and friends.

Surviving in addition to his wife is a daughter, Laura McClelland and husband, William, of Finksburg; son, Jeffrey Staggs and wife, Theresa, of Westminster; brother, David Staggs of Frostburg; nieces and nephews, and a great-niece.  He was predeceased by a brother, Roger Staggs.

A Funeral Service will be held at 11:00 AM on Wednesday, August 5th at St. Paul’s United Church of Christ, 17 Bond Street, Westminster, with his pastor, Reverend Marty Kuchma, officiating.  Burial will be private in Deer Park Methodist Cemetery.  The family will receive friends on Tuesday from 2-4 and 6-8 PM at the MYERS-DURBORAW FUNERAL HOME, 91 Willis St, Westminster, MD.  

Memorial contributions may be made in his name to the St. Paul's U.C.C., 17 Bond Street, Westminster, MD  21157, American Diabetes Association, P.O. Box 11454, Alexandria, VA 22312 or to the National Kidney Foundation  1301 York Road Suite 404, Lutherville, MD   21093.

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