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William C. Fust Sr.


1929 - 2019 Obituary Condolences
William C. Fust, Sr.

Louisville - Wm. Carl Fust, Sr., 89, a curious mind, sage advisor, generous benefactor, serious thinker, optimist, and model of equanimity died on January 10, 2019. Carl was born on October 3, 1929, in Louisville, Ky. He was a quintessential Louisvillian: the product of a fifth generation Kentuckian of British Isles descent (Jennie Irene Campbell Fust), and a son of German immigrants (Henry Herman Fust). He was the youngest of 8 siblings, and the last survivor of them.

We learned from his example to take care of those who have fallen on hard times because he always invested in charitable causes; to commit to civic engagement, as he for decades worked on local and state-wide political campaigns; to take care of family from his example of gladly aiding any of his extended family; to read widely, in order to, as he could, converse about many topics from science to history to politics; to anchor decision-making in facts and compassion; and above all, to be a positive thinker and let go of what has happened in the past. By these lessons, he made us better people.

His two most formative life experiences were getting a job as a paper carrier for the Courier Journal at age 13, and enlisting in the Navy in 1948. They enlarged his perspective and compassion, including and especially regarding those who were unlike himself; and opened his eyes to new ideas and new cultures. He passed this lesson on: seeking understanding beyond one's narrow personal circumstances is vital to being an upright neighbor and citizen. Working as a paper carrier, and eventual manager of other carriers, for 8 years allowed him to pay for his own tuition at St. Xavier High School, from which he graduated in 1948. His hard work, along with winning the Leroy Highbaugh 6-year scholarship for undergraduate and law school, allowed him to earn his undergraduate degree from UofL in 1952.

He entered the Naval Officer Candidate School in 1950 while an undergraduate, and served two years of active duty during the Korean conflict from 1952-54. His cruiser, the USS Rochester, was part of a good will tour of Southeast Asia after the Armistice was declared in Korea. They stopped in Manilla, Saigon, Bangkok, Singapore, and detoured across the equator where he was transformed by the "Court of Neptune" from a "Slimy Polywog" to a "Trusty Shellback." He served an additional 20 years in the Naval Reserve, and retired as a Commander.

Upon his return to Louisville in 1954, he completed law school at UofL in 1956, with the combination of the Highbaugh scholarship and the GI Bill, and thereafter embarked on a successful legal career of more than 40 years.

He remains an inspiration to his family for all the life lessons he imparted and because by hard work, grit, and perseverance, he created for his children, and other family members, a much easier, secure life than he ever had. A gift for which we are eternally grateful.

He leaves to honor his memory his wife of 57 years, Carol Lankswert Fust; his son William C. Fust, Jr., (Leah); his daughter Elizabeth C. Fust; his grandchildren Jillian and Aaron; and many nieces, nephews, and friends.

Visitation will be 4:00 to 7:00 Monday January 14 at Ratterman Funeral Home, 3711 Lexington Road, "in St. Matthews". Mass at St. Agnes Church, 1920 Newburg Road at 10:00a.m. Tuesday, January 15, with a celebration of his life to follow.
Published in The Courier-Journal on Jan. 13, 2019
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