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Family, colleagues remember former TCU police chief

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Photo of Oscar H. Stewart courtesy of Linda Ball, Stewart's daughter.

Photo of Oscar H. Stewart courtesy of Linda Ball, Stewart's daughter.

The TCU flags will fly at half-staff Tuesday in memory of Oscar H. Stewart, a long-time TCU employee.

Stewart died Aug. 10 at the age of 80. He worked at the TCU police department from 1978 to 1995, serving as assistant chief of police and chief of police during that time.

Don Mills, an education professor at TCU and former vice chancellor for student affairs, said he will always commend Stewart's commitment to the TCU police department. 

"Oscar worked hard to move the perception of TCU Police as just security to an actual police department, helping them make direct connections with the students."

Stewart holds a legacy as one of TCU’s first African American staff members, but he is also remembered by friends and colleagues as a supporter of education.

Stewart's daughter Linda Ball said her father loved to interact directly with TCU students as an unofficial adviser.

“He was people-smart, a people person. For the most part, he understood what made people tick, he was delightful to be around, and that served him well throughout his life,” Ball said.

Dottie Cook, a family friend, said Stewart was a strong supporter of education. He inspired his four daughters to complete college by working to attain his own degree from TCU.

“He took the position at TCU in order for his family and himself to attain higher education,” Cook said.

Cook said his love for education was not limited to academics. She said his compassionate heart was a direct influence from his close walk with God, prompting him to teach Sunday school classes.

Susan Adams, the associate vice chancellor of student affairs at TCU, said she will fondly remember their 38 years of friendship.

“His ability to stay calm in difficult situations, mixed with his military background and incredible sense of humor, impacted the lives of multiple students throughout the years,” she said.

Ball said Stewart was actively involved with The Fort Worth Area Civic Leaders Association, American Legion Post 838 as chaplain and lifetime member, and was a member of The Fort Worth Ambassadors.

Stewart’s daughter Michelle Stewart Thomas said she holds memories of her father near and dear to her heart.

“I will always remember that he was a father who showed up at school events that went on much too long, at track meets that were in the blazing Texas sun, at dinnertime in order to be with his family, at work in order to provide for his family, at church to show us how to live, at graduations to say, 'I’m proud of you' and at weddings to say, 'She’s all yours,'” Stewart Thomas said.

Stewart’s wake will be held at Greenwood Funeral Home in Fort Worth on Aug. 19. A funeral service will be held at the Southwest Christian Church on Aug. 20 at 10 a.m.

Oscar Stewart was preceded in death by his wife of 36 years, Murriel Stewart; their infant son, Anthony Stewart and daughter Ida G. Stewart, of The Woodlands, Texas.

Oscar is survived by his wife of 11 years, Lizzie Stewart; daughters Linda Stewart Ball of Murphy, Texas (spouse Jeff); Selena Alexander of Mesquite, Texas (Spouse Brian); Michelle Stewart Thomas of Monrovia, Calif. (spouse Eric); and step-daughter Kim Wall of Fort Worth, Texas (spouse Jerry); nine grandchildren; and several nieces, nephews and extended family members.

This story was updated on Monday, August 19, 2013 at 5:25 p.m.

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