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Oscar Donald Walters 1936-1999
February 15, 1999
Oscar Donald Walters Sr. died on January 6 at his home in Columbia, Md.
Walters, who graduated from the Philadelphia College of Art and earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in fine arts from Yale University, was one of the first black tenured professors at the University of Connecticut.
John Craig, professor of art and art history, describes Walters as "one of the most special and spirited artist-teachers - a true friend and colleague ... one of the finest and funkiest."
He possessed an uncompromising, charismatic, frank, yet humorous teaching style, that drove his students to maximize their talents. He loved music, especially jazz, and played the upright bass with such well known players as Archie Shep, Dizzy Gillespie and Max Roach.
"Oscar knew his gift, the gift of creativity, and used it to the fullest - in his art, his teaching, his music, his family and friends," says Craig.
Walters traveled extensively and enjoyed interacting with people from all walks of life.
He is survived by three children and a granddaughter.