I took some time out to mourn my dad, who died peacefully at home last week. I am trying not to feel too sorry for myself, as I know that I’m lucky he lived a full life, and that my children got to know him so well, but the truth is I am just terribly sad. He was simply awesome – both as a human being and as a dad – and had a huge role in influencing the person I am today. I’ll be blogging again by the end of the week, but in the meantime I wanted to share with you the obituary my sisters and I wrote about him.
Long time Palm Beach resident Stephen Cutter, 75, died peacefully at home in Floyd, Virginia on January 10th after a brave battle with cancer. Born in Boston, MA, on April 20, 1940 to Harry and Beatrice Cutter, he moved to Palm Beach with his parents at the age of six and lived there until he was 60. Stephen was a pioneer in residential real estate for 40 years, running his family’s firm Cutter Real Estate and serving as the president of the Palm Beach Board of Realtors. A gifted natural athlete, he enjoyed many outdoor sports, and even established windsurfing as a competitive sport at the Bath and Tennis Club in the 1980’s.
Stephen proudly served his country in the US Navy, including a stint aboard the USS Intrepid in the sixties. His time spent in military school and in the Navy inspired a meticulous nature that led to the most perfectly made beds, beautifully wrapped Christmas gifts and fastidiously organized closets one could imagine. He was also a devoted member of Rotary International, and served as the president of Palm Beach Rotary for many years.
In 1976, Stephen made an early investment in Mel Fisher’s legendary hunt for the capsized Spanish galleon Atocha, off the coast of Key West, Florida. When the wreck was eventually discovered in 1985, he became the beneficiary of all sorts of amazing treasure – 17th century gold coins, silver bars, emeralds and rubies.
Later in life, Stephen retired to Floyd, Virginia and would realize his lifelong dream of becoming a farmer. He raised organic sheep, tended a vineyard, took immaculate care of his land and made many meaningful friendships.
Most importantly, Stephen was a unique spirit, always courageously choosing his own path. He was fiercely independent, spiritually curious, and possessed an enthusiastic and often mischievous sense of fun, adventure and humor. He was a beloved and valued member of his community both in Palm Beach and in Floyd. He also had the most impressive head of hair many people have ever seen.
Stephen is survived by three adoring daughters, Kimberly Cutter, Amanda Brooks and Phoebe Cutter, two grandchildren Coco and Zachary Brooks, and also by his loving partner Rebecca West.