Friday, March 01, 2013

Mr. Gault Passes

By Jerry Gaudet

Mr. Dickson Gault

For those who came to Central through Piedmont JHS, or otherwise knew Mr. Dickson Gault who was principal there, we are saddened to report his passing this week.

 He was 99 years old. His family can be reached at:

 Mrs. Ruth Gault
6053 Wilora Lake Rd., Apt# 136
 Charlotte, NC 28212

Mr. Gault's Obituary published in the Charlotte Observer:

James Dickson Gault "Dick" CHARLOTTE Mr. Gault died February 24, 2013. Born September 17, 1914 in New Concord, Ohio to Wilbur and Emma Gault, he was a graduate of Muskingum College and held a Master's degree in Education from Western Reserve University. He was a U.S. Navy veteran, serving as a Pharmacist's Mate during WWII.

 In 1940, Dick moved to Charlotte and started a long career with the Charlotte-Mecklenburg Public School system. During his time at CMS, he was a teacher at old Central High, principal of Piedmont Junior High and, in 1955, the first principal of the new Eastway Junior High School. He later became Director of Social Studies, serving in that position until his retirement in 1978. In his time at CMS, 

Dick was a tireless innovator and champion of the Junior High concept; he is still remembered by many of his students for his tremendous dedication to their best interests. Dick married Ruth Ranson on June 15, 1940, a loving and complimentary relationship of more than 72 years that amazed and delighted all who knew them. The pair was an inseparable fixture of the community for decades: strong supporters of Mecklenburg Ministries, pioneers of the Bridge Builders program, volunteers with Friendship Trays, active with the Shepherd Center of Charlotte and Senior Scholars, and crusaders for civil rights who helped integrate Charlotte schools and housing in the 60s and 70s and worked on behalf of gay rights with PFLAG. 

Dick was a caring and humorous family man who enjoyed the simple pleasures of life and continually displayed an active and often self-deprecating wit. Together with Ruth he raised four children, by whom he is much missed.

 Late in life, Dick developed considerable skill as an artist and craftsman, producing beautiful stained glass creations by the hundreds for friends and family. These works still show signs of the mind that made them: tireless attention to detail, unique and experimental combinations of colors, and an unassuming, unforced beauty.

 Dick is survived by his wife, Ruth; by his sons and their wives: James D. and Ellen Gault of Superior, CO, Robert R. and Susan Gault of Bakersville, NC, and Lee and Teresa Gault of Bozeman MT; and by his daughter, Beth Wells of Charlotte. He is also survived by six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

 Preceding him in death, in addition to his parents, were sister Addalyn Zawacky and her husband, Ralph, and son-in-law Don Wells. The family wishes to give thanks to the nurses and CNA's at Wilora Lake Healthcare Center for their loving care of Dick, and to the faithful dedication of Bill Anderson and Paul Leonard.

 A memorial service will be held on Thursday, March 7 at 11:00 AM at Trinity Presbyterian Church in Charlotte. The family will receive friends after the service at the church. In lieu of flowers, donations to Friendship Trays (2401-A Distribution St. Charlotte, NC 28203), Mecklenburg Ministries (3900-A Park Rd. Charlotte, NC 28209) and PFLAG (P.O. Box 472532 Charlotte, NC 28247) would be greatly appreciated.
Published in Charlotte Observer on March 3, 2013