In lieu of flowers, memorial donations
Obituary of Steven Ross
Steven Thomas Ross passed away on Sunday, August 12, 2018 after a brief illness. He was 81.
A distinguished scholar, a respected military historian, an expert on Napoleonic military tactics and a gifted teacher, Steve was the author of numerous articles and reviews and wrote eight books on military and diplomatic history including European Diplomatic History, 1789-1799; Quest for Victory: French Military Strategy, 1792-1799; From Flintlock to Rifle: Infantry Tactics, 1740-1866; and French Military History, 1661-1799: A Guide to the Literature. He was also a leading student of American war plans, editing a multi-volume collection of war plans and a three volume series analyzing the plans from 1890-1950.
He was a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Williams College and held a Ph.D. from Princeton University. After several years in academia at the University of Nebraska and the University of Texas, Steve joined the faculty of the United States Naval War College where he taught in the Department of Strategy and Policy for 30 years. He held the William V. Pratt Chair in Military History. He also served as a visiting professor at Yale University and Williams College, worked for the Defense Intelligence Agency as a military analyst and was a scholar-in-residence at the Central Intelligence Agency. His knowledge, enthusiasm for teaching and candor contributed to the education of three generations of military leaders. He was awarded the United States Navy Meritorious Civilian Service Award.
Steve was a dedicated and serious scholar, but he was also a raconteur and a great storyteller who was as comfortable talking to the “regulars” at Dunkin Donuts on Broadway as he was discussing strategy and policy with admirals and senior government officials or chairing a panel of academics at an Ivy League symposium. He valued scholarship, he loved reading and research, and he wholeheartedly embraced the Williams College ethos of the life of the mind.
Steve was a member of the Touro Synagogue Board of Officers, a Vice-President of Temple Shalom and for many years served as the chair of the Advisory Board of the Salvation Army of Newport.
The son of Ruth Berlin Ross and Michael Bakunin Ross, Steve grew up in Hewlett, NY. He is survived by his wife Bea, his son Jay, his daughter-in-law Polina and his granddaughter Maya. We will miss him. We will not forget him. To paraphrase A. A. Milne, and for us things will never again be as they once were.
The funeral will take place on Wednesday, August 15 at 1:00pm at the Hoffman Memorial Chapel on Fowler Avenue in Newport. Interment will follow at Beth Olam Cemetery on Wyatt Road in Middletown.
Contributions may be made to Touro Synagogue or the Salvation Army of Newport.
Funeral arrangements by the Chevra Kadisha Association of Newport County.
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