Grand Isle – David Lee Stewart, 53, died of a heart attack in his sleep on Thursday morning, Oct. 4, 2012.

David was born on April 21, 1959 in Burlington, the son of Charles and LouAnn (Dubuque) Stewart.

In 1970, the family moved to Grand Isle, where David went to the Grand Isle School, worked on Lloyd Blow’s farm, and helped his grandfather Clarence Dubuque tend the Grand Isle Cemetery.

A 1977 graduate of So. Burlington High School, David launched his welding career as a hull maintenance technician in the U.S. Navy from 1977 to 1980. After he helped refurbish the USS MacDonough, he toured the Mediterranean and beyond in it, enjoying the life of a sailor at every port.

Back in Vermont, David worked and flourished as a welder and lead man during 27 years at what became FabTech in Colchester. Under David, the weld shop ran efficiently, and its employees felt valued. Always eager to develop the trade, David also taught welding at the Center for Technology, Essex. David was especially happy to be working for the past year at Tri-Angle Metal Fab in Milton, where his skills were appreciated, and the cameraderie was strong.

David married Shari Jarvis in 1987, and they lived and raised their two sons on Simms Point Road in Grand Isle. He was a devoted husband and father, a happy weekend barbecue host and a member of the Army Reserves.

Starting four years ago, David recreated his life by reconnecting with old friends and making close new ones. He was good-natured, gentle, sentimental and diplomatic, always ready with a good joke, and inclined to see racy innuendo in all things. He enjoyed playing horseshoes, golf, darts and cribbage as well as bowling with his father and sisters as “Charlie’s Pride” in Colchester’s Happy Go Lucky League. He was an avid founding member of the Island Eagles, where he was past Worthy Conductor and Worthy Chaplain.

David is survived by his sons Matthew and Gregory Stewart of Winooski; his father, Charles Stewart, and his sisters Kaydell Davis and Michelle St. Louis of Grand Isle; his sweetheart of two years, Ione Minot, of Essex Jct.; his nephews Evan Davis of Grand Isle and Timothy St. Louis of Colchester; his nieces Erica Brown of Oceanside, Calif.  and Jessica St. Louis of St. Albans; great-nieces Kaylah and Savannah Brown of Oceanside, Calif.; uncles and aunts Conrad Stewart of Bristol, Jan and Dick Raymond of Monkton and Sarasota, Fla. and Bruce and Maryann Dubuque of Grand Isle; and cousins too numerous to list!

David was predeceased by his mother, LouAnn, and his uncle, James Stewart.

A funeral service was held Sunday, Oct. 7 at the Minor Funeral and Cremation Center in Milton, and a reception followed at the Arrowhead Eagles Club on Bombardier Road in Milton. Burial will be at the convenience of the family in the Grand Isle Cemetery.

For those who wish, memorials in David’s name may be made to the Island Eagles, FOE #4533, 1 Hyde Road Suite 3, Grand Isle, VT 05458.

Online condolences may be made to www.minorfh.com.