ELLINGTON, CONN. — Stuart E. Magdefrau, 60, an avid antiques collector and dealer who had both an extensive knowledge of various antique items and the history of the local area, died Sunday, April 12. He was born on July 1, 1954, to the late Eleanor (Neff) and Edmund Magdefrau.
Stuart grew up in Ellington and graduated from Ellington High School in 1972. He earned a bachelor of science degree from the University of Connecticut in 1976, and worked as a partner at Massa and Hinsely before founding his own public accounting firm in 1986.
He also enjoyed setting up at many antiques shows across New England, including the stoneware collectors gatherings where Steve and Lorraine German of Mad River Antiques got to know him. Said the Germans, “We’ve known Stu for several years and he wasn’t only our friend in the antiques world, but our accountant as well. He loved the antiques business and was a familiar sight at local antiques shows, auctions and at Brimfield.” Stu knew that Lorraine collected early Christmas items. “He would always let her know when he found something he thought she would like,” said Steve German. “He never had an unkind word to say about anyone and we know that he’ll be missed by his many colleagues and customers.”
He enjoyed seeing his clients and valued the work he did at Magdefrau, Renner & Ciaffaglione, LLC and Keynote Financial Services, LLC. Stuart served on the board of directors at United Bank (formerly Rockville Bank) since 1995, as treasurer of Strong Family Farm and past treasurer of the Vernon (Conn.) Historical Society. He also served on numerous professional and local committees.
While he took great pride in his work and giving back to his community, his greatest achievement was his family. In 1975, he married his high school sweetheart and wife of 40 years, Jamy (Weihe) Magdefrau. They built their home and life together in Ellington, where they raised their three children. Stu and Jamy enjoyed golfing together, traveling to Rangeley Lakes, Maine, with their friends and family and going to UConn basketball games. He was a longtime member of Ellington Ridge Country Club, where he enjoyed many rounds of golf with his wife and friends, especially his weekly golf foursome. Stu coached soccer and little league in Ellington for many years, and was a member of Ellington Congregational Church.
In addition to his wife Jamy, Stuart leaves behind his three children: Christian and his wife Daria of Newark, Del.; Neal and his wife Michelle of Tolland, Conn.; and Allison McKeegan and her husband Curtis of Ellington. He leaves his grandson, Landon Stuart McKeegan, who was the light of his life. He also leaves his sister and brother-in-law, Carol and Richard Bowman of Vernon. He was predeceased by his sister Susan Werkhoven. He leaves his mother-in-law, Lucille Long, of Ellington, several sistersand brothers-in-law, as well as four nephews and two nieces. Stu will be greatly missed by his many friends and family members. His family would like to thank the staff at Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale-New Haven Hospital for their support and friendship during Stu’s courageous battle with cancer.
Relatives and friends are invited to join the family for calling hours on Friday, April 17, from 4 to 8 pm at Ladd-Turkington & Carmon Funeral Home, 551 Talcottville Road, Vernon. A celebration of Stuart’s life will be conducted on Saturday, April 18, at 11 am at Union Church in Rockville. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Ellington Community Scholarship Association (ECSA), memo: The Magdefrau Family Scholarship, PO Box 54, Ellington CT 06029, or online to the Cholangiocarcinoma Foundation at www.cholangiocarcinoma.org.