Stanley Wertheimer

Mystic - Stanley Wertheimer, 80, professor emeritus of mathematics at Connecticut College, died after a valiant battle with Parkinson's Disease on Thursday, March 3, 2016.

Born in Brooklyn, N.Y., he was the son of Samuel and Belle (Chernin) Wertheimer. He attended Renssalear Polytechnic Institute; and earned a master's degree and Ph.D from Georgia Institute of Technology. He began teaching at Connecticut College in 1972 and from 1982-1988 he was chair of the mathematics department and director of academic computing. He retired in 2001 so he could devote himself full-time to his creative pursuits.

In 1971, while he and his family spent a sabbatical year living in England, he discovered his passion for pottery and English country and Morris dancing. As a potter and a dancer, Stanley possessed a special insight into the creative process that inspired his perspective on teaching. Focusing on his understanding of the conjunction between mathematics and the arts, he motivated his students to use creative tools to master and find meaning in mathematics. Over the years Stanley has remained an active potter having several shows at local galleries. In addition, his work has been featured in the Parkinson's Disease Foundation's "Creativity and Parkinson's Insights".

In 1990, Stanley was diagnosed with Parkinson's disease. Understanding how important it is to have good information and to find ways to partner with others in the Parkinson's community, in 1994 he founded Connecticut Parkinson's Working Group. The goal of the group was to provide education and support for people with PD and to collaborate with the medical community to enhance treatment and research. In his role as an advocate and educator he has inspired and helped countless people with PD. His interest in Parkinson's disease and dance became focused in 2008 through the joint efforts of the Brooklyn Parkinson Group and Mark Morris Dance Group.

In 2011, through the "Dance for PD" program, The Stanley J. Wertheimer Fellowship Fund was started by his family and friends. It was not only inspired by Stan's work, but also by his mother Belle, who lived with Parkinson's disease for most of her life – her courage and determination set an example for everyone around her.

Stanley is survived by his partner, Gunilla Norris; his sister, Ruth Manson; son, David Wertheimer; daughters, Rachel Wertheimer and Alyssa Morin; son-in-law, Eric Morin; his former wife, Sheila Wertheimer; Gunilla's children, Jennifer Middleton and John Norris; and his beloved grandchildren, Alec, Emma, Chloe, Jacob, Naomi and Hannah.

Services are private.

In lieu of flowers, please send contributions to the Stanley J. Wertheimer Fellowship:

Published in The Day on Mar. 6, 2016