(Photo: The Lion's Roar Yearbook, 1970 edition)
(Photo source: Wes Livesey, '71)
Stewart J. Becker, '70
Eulogy Tennis USA Article
(Reference: Published in , )
Respected Tennis Coach Stewart Becker, at 52
By Emi Endo
Stewart Becker, a respected tennis coach whose students went on to professional careers, died Friday morning [16 January 1998] of liver and pancreatic cancer at his Levittown home. He was 52.
"He was a wonderful brother to me," said his sister, Roberta Becker of Mineola. "I think he was very giving. There are a lot of people that really are going to miss him a lot."
A Brooklyn native, he was raised in Rego Park, Queens, and moved to Roslyn as a teenager. He graduated from Milford Academy, in Milford, Conn., in 1962. He studied Spanish at Windham College in Putney, Vt., graduating in 1967.
His tennis-coaching career took him all over Long Island. Mr. Becker developed and coached more than 70 nationally ranked U.S. Junior Tennis players and more than 200 ranked junior players in the Eastern Tennis Association.
Several of his students, including a Wimbledon doubles semifinalist went on to be ranked in the top 100 in the world. He often designed playing approaches to suit each student's natural strengths, physicality, movement and personality.
Mr. Becker lived in Roslyn and North Bellmore before moving to Levittown six years ago.
His diagnosis of cancer in May, 1994, forced him to retire from active coaching, although he continued to advise a few longtime students.
When chemotherapy proved unsuccessful, he sought help from a Chinese herbalist. He credited the alternative medicine for causing his cancer to go into remission in 1995, when cancer in his lungs disappeared, his sister said. He also used the same visualization and concentration techniques that he had used with his students.
But that same year, his mother, Sylvia, died of pancreatic cancer.
In addition to his sister, he is survived by a brother, Barry Becker, of East Northport.
Services will be held today at 1 p.m. at Gutterman's Fbuneral Home in Jericho. Burial will follow at Wellwood Cemetery in Pinelawn.