Wilson S. Alling
Greenwich, Conn. — Wilson S. Alling, 69, died Friday, Oct. 5, 2012 outside on a beautiful afternoon at his home in Greenwich, Conn.
He was born May 30, 1943 in Montclair, N.J. near where his ancestors established a farm in 1639. He graduated from Montclair Academy and Gettysburg College. He began his teaching career at Riverdale Country School in 1966.
He earned a masters degree at Columbia University and moved to Connecticut in 1974, joining Greenwich Country Day School as head of the upper school. He taught English, coached lacrosse and served in a variety of administrative positions including assistant head until 1995. Between 1980 and 1982, he took a sabbatical to study with Rev. Terry Fullam at St. Paul's Church in Darien, learn to read Hebrew at Temple Shalom in Greenwich and work on the pediatric service at Sloan Kettering Hospital in Manhattan.
For 10 years he was co-owner with four close friends of an observant Jewish, co-ed summer camp in Monroe, N.Y. His family summers were spent in Westhampton Beach. In 1979, he purchased a small island in Maine and over the decades built a solar-powered summer home, hosting scores of family and friends. Some of the most wonderful friendships of his life were with the local fishermen and builders and their families in the community of St. George.
He had a deep, abiding interest in the spiritual dimension of the human experience and studied eastern religion during his time at Riverdale. For the past eight years, he worshipped at the Islamic Center in Stamford, Conn. at the regular Friday prayers, learning the third Abrahamic tradition. He was equally comfortable attending a Catholic mass or joining the Episcopalian services in which he was raised. He read through the Bible, the Quran, the Bhagavad Gita numerous times, as well as hundreds of religious texts, always looking for the correspondences rather than the points of separation in the different faiths. The lifelong study shaped his perspective of living.
He is survived by his beloved wife of 15 years, Patricia Lansburgh Alling; her two daughters Nikki Malcolm of Park City, Utah and Ashley Malcolm Laakso of Park City, Ashley's husband, Thomas, and their three daughters, Paige, Reese and Blake, all of whom he loved as his own children and grandchildren; his sisters Susan Miller, Dr. Stearly Holt and his brother Dr. Frederic Alling; eight nieces and nephews, 15 great-nieces and nephews and two great-great nephews, one great-great niece; and hundreds of friends whom he dearly loved.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent payable to the Wilson S. Alling Fund, P.O. Box 484, Greenwich, CT 06836, from which gifts will be sent to the many nonprofit organizations to which Wilson was consistently committed. Wilson's presence will be sorely missed, yet he will abide in the hearts of his family and friends.