Born in Kansas City, Mo., to Elmer and Susan West, Dave graduated from Shawnee Mission High School, where he held several leadership positions. Freshman year at Princeton saw Dave as a member of the Undergraduate Council staff and senior year on the Class Memorial Fund Drive. He had selected English as his major; Campus (of which he was to become president) as his eating club; and fellow Kansas Citian Stu Hutchison as his junior- and senior-year roommate. Following graduation, he and Peggy Daniels were wed; a deferral from his ROTC Army service obligation allowed him to complete law school at Harvard, following which 2nd Lt. and Mrs. David West were posted to a missile site in Germany. Dave was the officer on duty when President John F. Kennedy was assassinated, forcing the base to its highest level of readiness.

The crisis long passed, in the fall of 1964 Dave returned to Kansas City to begin a 45-plus year career in the trusts and estates field. In 1979, he was elected to the American College of Trust and Estate Counsel, eventually becoming the senior member of his firm’s estate planning group. He served, among others, on the boards of St. Luke’s Hospital Foundation and Bishop Spencer Place.

In 2020, the Wests moved to Cary, N.C., and there Dave died, Aug. 10, 2023. He is survived by Peggy; daughters Carolyn ’90 and Anne ’92; one grandson; and his brother, Robert ’60.

Undergraduate Class of 1959