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In Memoriam

Master Cadwalladyr Stone of Stonecroft, OP, OL

Argent, a bend checky
palewise azure and argent.

Rhea Stone passed away in bed September 21, 2013. No further details are known at this time.

Cadwalladyr Stone of Stonecroft. Cadwalladyr (or Stone) was a Pelican, a Laurel, held a Grant of Arms and was a member of the Order of the Leaf of Merit, and was granted Ruxton #2. He was Kingdom Seneschal for a while in the 70s, and for some time was very active.

Some Reminisces:

(Photo to right provided by Cadwalladyr's son Rhea Stone, IV, used with his permission. It is a photo that Cadwalldyr wished to be rembered by ...)

Cadwalladyr Stone of  Stonecroft, was one of the core group of the Shire of Golden Rivers when Patrice and I arrived there in the in the early 1970's. He was instrumental in turning the Shire into a barony and the Barony into the roots of the Principality of Cynagua, with his organizational and people skills and willingness to add his strength to any endeavor. He was one of the first handful of Peers that the Barony generated in those early years. As Kingdom Seneschal he ably followed in the footsteps of Stephen of Lorraine and William the Lucky.

He was left-handed, had a quirky wry sense of humor, smoked Latakia strong enough to repel wild boars and would try his hand at anything. I am proud to have known him. -- Kevin Peregrynne

I first met Stone when I was in high school as a member of the Mythopoetic Society. My fondest memories are sitting and listening to him talk and smoke his pipe. The last event I remember he and his wife attending was my first coronation which meant they were there for my Pelican ceremony. Having them there meant a lot to me.

Later I worked with them on two Westercon committees. Their youngest son is about a year younger than Kelvin. Rolf managed to find a set of bunk beds when Kelvin outgrew his crib. Stone and Sue had two boys and needed the bunk beds so we traded them a waterbed for Kelvin.

I lost track of him when I moved to the Bay Area. The last time I saw Stone was at Edward of Southhaven's wedding.

Stone was one of those amazing people you never forget. I am honored to have known him and saddened at his loss.

Letitia de Scotia

Stone was a kind and funny man of great wit. He was a fun fight but I only fought him once or twice. He wrote ridiculous mumming plays in rhymed couplets, which he read while volunteers acted them out. He owned more dictionaries than anyone else I've known. For all that he did for the West and for Cynagu, I will always associate him with Golden Rivers as leader of one of the three households that dominated the province, and that made him a great lord when I was 15. He was silly. He made the SCA fun back when we still understood that fun is what the SCA is supposed to be about.

--Valgard [Stonecleaver] Jarl

Photo of Cadwalladyr Stone of Stonecroft shooting from horseback, provided by Ammaerlin de Montrose et Chardonnay:

A week ago, James Martel the Drakeslayer, mundanely Jim Smith, told me Stone was gone, who most of us remember as Master Cadwalladyr.  And his son and others seek stories to mark the passing.  Here is one.  It is a poor story, not because I have  too little to say, but too much.  Years and age have smeared and chipped my memory.  The pieces float around me, and infuriatingly refuse to assemble.

We called him Stone, never Rhea, and certainly not Cadwalladyr until years far later.  "We" were a group of mostly college-age kids in a book discussion group, a local branch of the Mythopoeic Society.  Stone appeared at a meeting in late 1972, early 1973, thereabouts: a large gray gnome, silent, watchful, dry, a bit hermitish, seemingly drinking us in and musing if he wanted to be part of our nerdy, somewhat insular, certainly escapist circle.

He was cagey about his first name -- "Just Stone," he said.  But he returned to the next gathering and to the next.  He seemed to warm to us in stages.  In time he was a regular part of the circle, a kind of elder Tom Bombadil, minus the singing.

In early 1974 a young couple popped in to suggest we might have a new branch of the Society for Creative Anachronism.  Stone liked this idea, was a key advocate.  Another group soon took form, the "Shire of Golden Rivers," as he later helped to name it.  He served as an officer, and found an enthusiasm for medieval arts and science: field heraldry, book heraldry, archery, equestrianism, bardic arts, history, and all the pomp and poetry, the political and administrative minutiae.  And most of all the sheer theater of it.  A strain of greasepaint seemed to run in his blood.  When Society friends began a drama group, he joined in and named it: La Compagnie de le Dindon d'Or, the Company of the Golden Turkey.  He performed in several of our absurdest plays.  In the "Tragedy of Pyramus and Thisbe," he was about the most expressive Thisbe ever, despite the veil.

Through the theater group he met Susan -- in the SCA, we remember her as Kriemhilde.  Through Sue, he found marriage, extended family, science fiction fandom, and other new connections.  He remarked, somewhat bemused, that he had never expected to have so many friends.

In 1978, When Stone received his OP, he cautioned us never to call him Master Stone, only Stone, and Master Cadwalladyr only in the duress of formal circumstances.  As others have noted already, he had a dignity framed by silliness.  For example, look closely at his arms, if you can find a set by his own hand: the "bend checky" was always a bit askew, off center, the checks not quite following the slope of the bend.  Stone liked asymmetry.

But then in 1989, Sue was gone, suddenly.  For us it was a lightning strike; for Stone ... I cannot begin to imagine.  More like the fall of a meteor into the heart of his new life.  He folded back into himself; his children, job, house and health issues, seemed to drink up every spark he had.

We were no longer children.  Time, with its inevitable gravity, drew us all in different directions.  On occasion I would call or send a card, and James & Megan struggled to keep a door open.  Jim expressed concern: Stone was just not taking care of himself.  Pleasantly, Stone did show at the 30th Anniversary Banquet of Golden Rivers in 2004, a quiet cameo with a measure of the old cheer.  In August 2007 he attended my wedding, for which I am deeply grateful.  Despite the wheelchair, he seem only a little older -- still a large gnome, still dry and gently sardonic.  But quieter.  Seeing his horizon ahead of him, perhaps.

Of course I am guessing.  It was good to see him, but amid the day's distractions and confusion we barely spoke.  I did think, this might be the last I see of Stone.  And I thought, I should call him.  And I meant to.  And I didn't.

It is my loss.  Now I say goodbye the only way I can.  Farewell, Master Cadwallayder, thank you.  You were a good man, and we remember.

-- Edward of South-haven, mka Ken Nahigian

Cadwalladyr Stone of Stonecroft was his SCA name and it was rare anyone called him ‘Cadwalladyr.’ For years, I never knew his real first name, almost as if he did not have one. Whether it was in SCA context or mundanely he was simply ‘Stone.’ Those who knew Stone cannot possibly think of him without thinking of his lady wife, Kriemhild of Stonecroft (Sue Stone), especially if you knew them.

Between Stone and Kriemhild, much volunteer services were accomplished in the SCA. I have memories of a myriad of SCA events over the years. I joined the SCA in the Autumn 1976. Stone and Kriemhild were people who seemed to keep things going in the West Kingdom and the Barony of Golden Rivers.

Did the barony members ever go hither and yon, to schools, malls and parks for SCA demos (education and recruiting), to events on weekends or activities at each other’s homes, weeknights for guild activities in arts and science. The Barony of Golden Rivers was actively recruiting with its ‘cast of characters’ and Stone as one of the fun characters who kept us informed, laughing and drew people into the fold as the barony grew.

Stone and Kriemhild were Archers as were many in Golden Rivers and held his own in scores. When Stone donned his scrappy armour and lumbered onto the field, watching him after seeing other fighters was like watching a giant of a man in slow motion, who reminded me of a hobbit (I never saw his feet to know for sure). I recall the early days in the P Street Park and armour worn by Stone was a hodge-podge of parts he made.

He was working on his ‘maille armour’ (some call it ‘chainmail’). Yes, sitting in a corner at many gatherings, one could find Stone in a lump, diligently and methodically working on his ‘shirt of maille armour’ – quietly with few words. Then, an occasional profound comment. Ah, Stone was always listening to the jabbering of all of us! Never knew if Stone finished his ‘maille shirt.’ Heard from Kriemhild he spent time reading and was an avid reader learning much from books. They had the largest home library I had ever seen (then) with great resource books.

Without a doubt, Stone was a mover and shaker in the SCA and got things done, motivating others to do. He had great ideas! As I recall, the idea of moving Crown Tournaments from one place to the other: North to South of the entire West Coast before AnTir and Caid became Kingdoms – was Stone’s! It worked and was fun to interact with SCA folks on their turf, not only on ours.

Stone and others were instrumental in the creation of the Principality of Cynagua. The word ‘Cynagua’ is an ultimate oxymoron in Spanish: ‘sin’ (spelt ‘cyn’) and ‘agua’ meaning ‘land without water’). Cynagua is always rediscovering places like Discovery Park where we shot archery – after the flooded rivers from so much rain and snow melt. The Greater Sacramento Valley does not lack water! Stone said that was the meaning of Cynagua – so it must be true! Silliness at its best!

Mummers: Stone was without question, fun! SCA banquets needed entertainment, so he and others created it. I remember laughing at the antics of the mummers, Stone often the tallest one. Ah, the younger SCA generations have not known of this. It was silly puns, wonky words and presented in a flat-tone by Stone. We all laughed at the comedy of words – strung together in sentences that sometimes really did not seem to make sense, except they did when you looked up the words if you did not know them.

When Stone was Kingdom Seneschal, I once recall a hilarious sequence that occurred in which Stone’s delivery was especially wild. I wish I could recall the actual words, though the visuals remain. It had to do with ‘searching for the Scones that Stone made hidden under the King’s Throne…..’ might have had to have been there and perhaps someone else remembers it best. The populace roared with laughter, as did the King and Queen. We did much jocularity long ago and far away and Stone was a champion at it. SCA was all about having fun and leaving the mundane life behind us for a time.

I believe Stone was one of the first persons I knew back then who when he was going to smoke his pipe, he went outside in respect for others who did not care to breathe second hand tobacco smoke – a courteous thing to do, since he was a kind and courteous man. The photo of him was taken by me at night on a patio of some folks’ home near UC Davis at a revel. It was a classic: Stone smoking his clay pipe, looking rather English and less a hobbit!

Stone and Kriemhild were implemental in teaching me and others about ‘autocratting.’ We had many good times together and many laughs. I believe they both taught many others lots of things over time. It was what they did: educate others, service to and teach others about SCA matters – the epitome of SCA Peerage!

A quote I heard a time back seems to fit Stone: ‘Character is who you are when no one is looking.’ To me, Stone had good character and besides, he was certainly a character, highly educated and knew how to effectively use words in a string to make a sentence that when Stone spoke – everyone listened. Godspeed Stone…… it was my pleasure to have known you and you will always be remembered.

As ever, -- Countess Dierdriana of the Misty Isles

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Purgatorio Coronation (July 31-August 1, 1976, AS XI)
Purgatorio Coronation (July 31-August 1, 1976, AS XI)

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