Landscapes 13

Harold Daniel "Dan" Stillwell

March 21, 1931 ~ November 30, 2019 (age 88)


- Harold Daniel “Dan” Stillwell, 88, of Asheville NC passed away peacefully Saturday, November 30, 2019, surrounded by family.  He was born March 21, 1931, in Staten Island, New York, the son of Carl Willard Dudley Stillwell and Pauline Ruth Feldman Stillwell.  He was preceded in death by his parents and a brother, Edgar Feldman Stillwell.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years, Jean Lydia Esval Stillwell, two daughters Judy (Claude) Courbois and Laura (Charlie) Haag; and five grandchildren Caroline Courbois, Lindsey Haag, Calvin Courbois, Chloe Haag and Spencer Haag. 

Dan earned his BS and MF degrees in Forestry from Duke University, where he was also a member of the men’s gymnastic team.  He went on to earn a PhD in Geography from Michigan State University.  He taught Geography for 33 years, first at the University of Texas, then East Carolina University and finally Appalachian State University, specializing in natural hazards, biogeography, cartography and remote sensing.  Dan was a true environmentalist and was fortunate that his professional endeavors overlapped with his personal passions.

Dan’s life was rich with travel and adventure, making lifelong friends across the globe.  His journeys included Russia, Brazil, Kenya, Thailand, Chile, New Zealand, Mexico and most of Europe, many of these trips enjoyed with his wife, Jean. He also traveled to all 50 states and was particularly fond of our national parks. 

He will be remembered for his immense enthusiasm for the outdoors and ceaseless energy to share his love of nature.  He hiked the trails of Western North Carolina whenever possible, and in his retirement he and his wife published a regional recreational map for others to enjoy the outdoors he so loved.  During retirement, he and his wife also opened Blue Planet Map Company, in Boone NC.  Other favorite activities he enjoyed include gardening, skiing, and singing barbershop.

Dan and Jean were active members of the Boone Unitarian Universalist Fellowship in Boone, North Carolina.

A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.  His family thanks his MAHEC physicians, Givens Health Center and Care Partners Hospice for the excellent care they provided.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions in Dan’s memory may be made to

Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy at SAHC Memorial Donation


Sierra Club at Sierra Club Memorial Donation


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You can still show your support by sending flowers directly to the family, or by planting a memorial tree in the memory of Harold Daniel "Dan" Stillwell


Southern Appalachian Highlands Conservancy

Sierra Club

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