Remembering a Samaritan Saint: Dr. Tucker Battle (1938 – 2017)

Dr. Tucker Battle, a passionate SMGW Board leader and Partner Representative from St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church, DC, died on December 28. In recent years, Tucker had been battling Parkinson’s disease, which precipitated him stepping off the SMGW Board of Directors three years ago, in January 2015. Tucker’s wife, Jane Battle, survives him as a passionate giver and SMGW leader.  

Tucker’s professional training was in such complex, data-driven areas as engineering physics, applied math and fluid mechanics – subjects some of us struggle to actually define! Tucker brought that rigorous training and discipline to Samaritan Ministry’s Development Committee and Board. In work that helped shape the strategic direction of our current donor development strategy, Tucker presented detailed grafts depicting donor trends over multiple years and levels. 

It was not just his time he gave, it was a passionate commitment of his critical mind. Tucker presented demanding challenges and questions, questions that not only made us think but sometimes got under our skin! While I and other leaders might be befuddled in the moment, it was always fruitful and helpful in retrospect. When I would call him about his personal giving or some other commitment, it was always fun because then the table was turned! He appreciated the irony and the “ask” – and he responded. Indeed, with his wife Jane, Tucker was transformative in his generosity.       

Tucker will be specifically remembered in two places over the next two weeks, to which anyone who is reading this is invited. The first occasion is SMGW’s Annual OPEN meeting of the Partner Council, on Tues., Jan. 23 @ 6 p.m. @ St. Mary’s Episcopal Church, 2609 N. Glebe Road, Arlington, VA 22207. Jane Battle and family members will be there to receive the 2018 Change Agent Award on Tucker’s behalf. There is irony in the fact that we tried to honor Tucker in 2016 and he waved us off in favor of “more qualified candidates,” he told me, who he proceeded to name! Second, a memorial service for Tucker Battle will be held on Sat., Jan. 27 @ 2 p.m. @ St. Patrick’s Episcopal Church, 4700 Whitehaven Parkway, NW DC, 20007. In lieu of flowers, donations are invited to St. Patrick’s Memorial Fund.           

To Tucker Battle, our Samaritan Saint, we say: Well done, good and faithful servant – and may light perpetual shine upon YOU!