Lincoln Boyd Stevens
October 14, 1950 ‒ September 26, 2020
Mount Vernon, Ohio
Lincoln Boyd Stevens, 69, of Mount Vernon passed away on Saturday morning, September 26, 2020 at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center after a recent diagnosis of cancer.
He was born on October 14, 1950 in Pittsburg, Kansas, to the late Dr. Morris L. and Grace (Toland) Stevens. They were an influential part of Lincoln’s spiritual formation and intellectual pursuits, guiding him toward what is good, true, and beautiful.
Lincoln attended Asbury College in Wilmore, Kentucky, where he studied philosophy from 1968-1972. It was during the Asbury Revival of 1970 that he experienced the Lord in a deeper way, which shaped his relationships, his vocation, and his worldview for the rest of his life.
At the center of Lincoln’s life was his family. At Asbury, he met Betsy and started a relationship that developed, through letter-writing, into engagement and then marriage on August 24, 1974. He always claimed that Betsy made him a better man, husband, and father. They built a life and a family together. He loved and enjoyed being with his children and grandchildren; he always took an interest in their passions and looked for ways to learn and grow right alongside them. He very naturally filled their home with conversation and laughter that could be heard around the dinner table and in the living room. So often, he and Betsy showed hospitality by opening their home to hundreds of friends, students, visitors from other countries, and sometimes complete strangers. They also faithfully contributed to the life of Lakeholm Church of the Nazarene where Lincoln taught a Sunday school class for many years and where so many have become like family.
Lincoln found his calling in the area of philosophy. After college, he moved to Scotland to work on a Master’s in philosophy at the University of Edinburgh where he discovered the Scottish Common Sense philosophers and their particular influence on American thought and higher education. His time there had a profound influence on the direction of his own intellectual interests and teaching. He went on to earn a PhD from The Ohio State University. He eventually came to Mt. Vernon in 1977 to teach philosophy at Mount Vernon Nazarene College. In the classroom, he had the unique ability to engage all kinds of students with his sometimes shocking and silly antics. His desire was always the pursuit of truth, challenging his students to think critically and Christianly about their world in order to live better lives. He was not only a teacher but also a mentor and a friend. His legacy lives on in the thousands of students he had during his 43 years there.
He is survived by his wife, Elizabeth “Betsy” (Jarvis) Stevens; children, Sarah (David) Lehman and their daughter Lola of Charlottesville, VA, Adam Stevens and his children Micah, Jonah, and Lydia of Boardman, OH, Peter Stevens of Mt. Vernon, OH, and Katherine (Ben) Radcliffe and their children Simeon, Matthias, Tabea, Naomi, and Luka of Kudjip, Papua New Guinea; siblings, John (Jan) Stevens of Windsor, CT, Rozelle (Steve) Rumford of Macon, GA, Mary (Barney) Cochran of Mt. Vernon, OH, Delano (Kristen) Stevens of Franklin, TN, and Jane (Dan) Andrus of Centennial, CO; and many beloved nieces and nephews.
A private celebration of life service for family will be held at the Kokosing Nature Preserve on Friday, October 2, 2020. The family will receive friends at his gravesite on Saturday, October 3, 2020 from 10-noon in the lawn area of the Kokosing Nature Preserve, 10620 Quarry Chapel Rd., Gambier.
In lieu of flowers, a gift can be given to the Greatest Need Fund for Kudjip Nazarene Hospital in Papua New Guinea. A check can be made out to Lakeholm Church of the Nazarene (memo line: Lincoln Stevens). To give online, visit https://www.lakeholm.org where a link for the Lincoln Stevens Memorial Fund can be found.
To share a memory or send an expression of sympathy to the family visit www.snyderfuneralhomes.com
The Dowds-Snyder Funeral Home is honored to serve the family of Lincoln Boyd Stevens.