Douglas M. Young, 82

Published 12:18 pm Tuesday, August 26, 2014

STAUNTON, August 26 — Douglas M. Young, 82, died Monday afternoon, August 18, 2014, at the University of Virginia Medical Center in Charlottesville. A native of Salisbury, North Carolina, he was the son of the late Frederic H. Young Sr. and Hazel Morton Young. An older brother, Frederic Young Jr., preceded him in death.

He was Professor Emeritus of Theatre at Longwood University where he taught theatre and directed plays for 27 years before retiring in 1996.

Mr. Young was also a playwright with several productions and publications. His first one-act play, “Waitin’ for Eden”, was produced by the Carolina Playmakers while he was working on an M.A. in English in Chapel Hill. He earned a second graduate degree, an M.A. in Theatre, at the University of Virginia where he was the Shubert Fellow in Playwriting. While there, two of his plays were produced: “Angels of the Half-Moon” (1968) and “Among the Brutes and Tulips” (1969). In the late 1960’s Fletcher Collins with Theatre Wagon produced “A Thin Little Book” at the Old Albemarle Hotel in Charlottesville using local Staunton talent. This play had been produced earlier in Denver, Colorado, by the First Unitarian-Universalist Church.

Email newsletter signup

Another play, “Miss Doris Anderson”, was produced in Washington, DC, at the Back Alley Theatre, at the University of Mississippi and at Converse College. This play was also published in Southern Theatre Magazine. Mr. Young directed a production of “Angels of the Half-Moon” at Longwood University in 1995. “The Professionals” was produced by the Waterworks Players in Prince Edward County.

Mr. Young was the author of two books: The Feminist Voices in Restoration Comedy: The Play-worlds of Etherege, Wycherley, and Congreve and an anthology of his one-act plays titled Ceremony of the Soups. He received his Ph.D. in Theatre from Florida State University. He served as Vice-Chair and Chair of Playwriting Awards for Region IV, the American College Theatre Festival (1978-1983). He received the ACTF Award for Excellence in 1985.

In addition to his professional association with the dramatic arts, Mr. Young especially loved music, and he was an avid baseball fan. He spent three years in the United States Marine Corps during the Korean War prior to enrolling at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill as an undergraduate.

Mr. Young died on the 57th anniversary of his marriage to the former Sarah Varner of Staunton, who survives him. He is also survived by a daughter, Katherine Elizabeth Young (John Williams) of Arlington; a son, Christopher Douglas Young (Christina Rivera) of Staunton; as well as three grandsons, Alexander Young-Williams, and (twins) Miguel and Andreas Rivera Young; brother-in-law, Charles H. Varner Jr. (Mickey) of Staunton and several cousins.

At Mr. Young’s request, there will be no formal visitation or funeral service, but family and friends may visit at the home any time. The family would like to express appreciation to his caregivers from Care Home Medical during his long years of illness and to the staff at Emeritus Assisted Living in Staunton, who provided care during his last few years. The family is also grateful to Mr. Young’s friend, Howard Baker, who faithfully visited and took him on numerous outings.

Donations may be made to either the Robert R. Moton Museum for Civil Rights Education, 900 Griffin Boulevard, Farmville, VA 23901, or to the Staunton Augusta Rescue Squad, 1601 N. Coalter Street, Staunton, VA 24401.

Services are being provided to the family by the Henry Funeral Home and Cremation Center in Staunton.