Dr. Maurice Earl “Buzz” Star, 80, died at Good Shepherd Hospice in Manhattan Friday after a six-month struggle with cancer.
Buzz was born Nov. 12, 1933 in Topeka, the son of Robert Morton and Alice Lorene Brown Stark. The family moved to Clovis, N.M., where Buzz attended grade school, and then to Salina, where he graduated from high school. Buzz attended Washburn University for one semester before joining the U.S. Navy during the Korean War.
Buzz served as a court reporter at the Navy Receiving Station, Treasure Island, San Francisco, Cali., and was a member of the base tennis team. On Aug. 7, 1954, Buzz married Carolee Walsh in the chapel on Treasure Island, where both were stationed. Six months later, he was on his way to the far east, cruising the Pacific on the destroyer U.S.S. Gregory.
After his discharge, Buzz received a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Kansas State University. He was a staff accountant at Peat, Marwick, Mitchell CPA firm in Kansas City and later worked for the Kansas State Extension Service. After receiving an MBA from KSU, Buzz decided teaching was his calling. In 1966 he joined the faculty at Michigan Technological University in Houghton.
Buzz later received a Ph. D from the University of Missouri, then taught at Eastern Michigan University and served as head of the Department of Accounting. He returned to K-State in 1976 where he became the first head of its Department of Accounting in the College of Business. He was also director of the Master of Accounting program. During a sabbatical leave, Buzz taught in MBA programs in Pordenone, Italy, and Munich, Germany.
Buzz was instrumental in gaining American Association of Colleges and Schools of Business (AACSB) accreditation for the KSU department of accounting, a first for accounting programs in Kansas. Buzz later served on the AACSB accounting accreditation team and chaired the Federation of Schools of Accountancy Accreditation Committee. Buzz also served on boards of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, the American Accounting Association and the Kansas and Michigan societies of CPAs.
Along with tennis, Buzz played racquetball in his younger days and enjoyed canoeing with his children along the shores of Lake Superior and sailing with them on Tuttle Creek Lake. He was an avid woodworker, producing many pieces of furniture for his home. He also enjoyed drawing and painting.
Buzz and Carolee were active AFS International Cultural Programs, and hosted many AFS exchange students. After Buzz’s retirement, he and Carolee spent many weeks traveling abroad, visiting friends and family, including their AFS children. Summers were spent cooling off in northern Michigan.
Surviving are his wife, Carolee, of the home; children David (Brenda) of Roeland Park; Dan (Elizabeth), of Arlington, Texas; Jeffrey (Sharon), of Topeka; Ann Larson, of Manhattan; Gary (Anne), of Marquette, Mich.; Tim (Nikki), of Blue Springs, Mo.; grandchildren Brandon Gulley-Stark, Sarah and Hannah Stark, Keely and Brandt Stark, Owen, Luke and Jacob Larson, Calvin, Kedzie and Holton Stark; and one great-grandchild, Treston Stark.
Also surviving are brothers Richard (Nan), of Rockwall, Texas; and Tom (Marilyn) of Las Vegas; and a number of nieces and nephews.
Cremation will take place, and a memorial service will later be announced. Memorial contributions can be made to the Maurice E. Stark Scholarship Fund through the KSU Foundation or to Disabled American Veterans.