scouts-l Mail Archive for August of 2000: Gone Home
Fri Aug 04 2000 - 23:33:12 CDT
The following Obituary was published this morning in the Providence Journal.
I knew Gus. I can still see him riding around camp in his Model "A". He would
wave to everyone with his index and pinky (like 2 outs in baseball).
H. Cushman "Gus" Anthony, 96; Boy Scout leader, Yawgoog director
By MARION DAVIS
Journal Staff Writer
PROVIDENCE -- H. Cushman "Gus" Anthony, a long-time Boy Scout executive known
for his stamina, wit and dedication to scouting even after his retirement,
died yesterday from the effects of a stroke. He was 96.
Born on March 7, 1904, he was the son of William Gardner Anthony and Ruth
Gilman Cushman Anthony. The family lived in a stately house on Euclid Avenue,
on the East Side. Mr. Anthony was educated in the Providence public schools,
graduating in 1922 from the Hope Street High School.
In March 1915, as a student at the Slater Avenue School, Mr. Anthony joined
the Boy Scouts 3rd Providence Troop. His scoutmaster was a 17-year-old named
J. Harold Williams, who would lead the Narragansett Council of the Boy Scouts
of America from 1918 until 1962.
"Chief" Williams was "the greatest influence" on Mr. Anthony, who worked
closely with him for decades, according to Mr. Anthony's assistant, Judy
Mr. Anthony was among the first Boy Scouts to attend Camp Yawgoog, which
opened in 1916. He returned for 52 more summers, first as a camper, then,
starting in 1921, as part of the staff. He was camp director from 1951 to
1968. The Narragansett Council's photo collection includes a picture of Mr.
Anthony driving U.S. Sen. Claiborne Pell and his wife, Nuala, around the camp
in his trademark 1921 Model T, which he called the "Funeral Coach."
Even after his retirement, Mr. Anthony was a frequent visitor to the camp,
always in his uniform. In 1981, he established the Yawgoog Alumni
Association, which now has about 1,600 members nationwide. He co-wrote "The
Yawgoog Story" with Williams in 1985, and in 1990, he helped to organize
Yawgoog's 75th anniversary party, which drew about 800 people.
"My greatest love in scouting was camping," Mr. Anthony told The Journal in
Mr. Anthony joined the Scouts' professional staff as a field executive in
1927, after five years at Brown University, where he was part of the Class of
1926 and had completed one year of graduate work in biology.
He met his wife, the late Martha Jane (Kiser) Anthony, of Kentucky, through
his work. She was a psychiatric social worker and wanted to enroll one of her
charges in Camp Yawgoog. They talked in his office, and then he asked if they
could continue the discussion over dinner.
They were married in October 1933, and they had one daughter, Gwendolyn
Anthony Mazanetz, and two grandchildren: Thomas Anthony Mazanetz, who became
an Eagle Scout, and Martha L. Donnell.
As the Narragansett Council grew, Mr. Anthony rose through the ranks. In
1939, he became assistant Scout executive and chief of staff under Williams.
In September 1962, he became deputy Scout executive.
Mr. Anthony retired on March 1, 1969, but continued to serve on the finance
and advisory committees of the Narragansett Council.
"He fell in love with scouting as a young kid, and he really tried to follow
the Scout principles," said Gwendolyn Mazanetz. "You were to serve God, and
you were to serve your country, and you were loyal, and you were friendly. .
. . This is how he lived his life."
Even as he lay dying in a hospice on Tuesday night, she said, he bid farewell
to his grandson with a Scout salute.
But the Boy Scouts were far from the only group to benefit from Mr. Anthony's
seemingly endless energy.
Mr. Anthony also served on the board of directors of the New England section
of the American Camping Association. He was class president, reunion chairman
and class fund agent for the Brown Class of 1926, and he walked down College
Hill every year at graduation until last year, Mazanetz said.
Mr. Anthony was active with the Providence Art Club, served on the buildings
and grounds committee of the Rhode Island Historical Society, and was on the
advisory committee of the Providence Preservation Society.
He was head usher and deacon at the Central Congregational Church for more
than three-quarters of a century, and he was founder and cochairman of the
Concerned Citizens of the East Side, which sought to quiet down Thayer
Mr. Anthony was also active in senior citizens' affairs. He served on the
Governor's Council on Aging and on the Commission on Care and Safety of the
Elderly, and he was on the board of directors of Hamilton House and of Home
Health Services of Rhode Island.
Mr. Anthony's dedication earned him numerous awards, from Brown University;
the Scouts -- he received the Silver Beaver Award in 1975; the Providence Art
Club; the Roman Catholic Diocese of Providence; the American Red Cross; the
American Camping Association; and the University of Scouting Sciences, which
gave him an honorary doctorate in 1982.
In 1985, he was inducted into the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame, and the
following year, he was one of 350 Providence residents to receive Special
Citizen Awards for the city's 350th anniversary.
Information about Mr. Anthony's funeral was not available last night. But his
daughter did say how he wanted people to mark his passing.
"He wanted to be remembered as the most happy fellow," she said. "He didn't
want people to be sad."