Duncan Edward Walton died on Sept. 30 at his home in Oak Bluffs, surrounded by his loving family. He was 94.

He was born in Jersey City, N.J. in May 1928, the only child of William and Ella Walton. He received his undergraduate degree from Long Island University and, in 1951, earned a master’s degree in educational psychology from New York University. He served honorably in the U.S. Air Force.

In 1956, he completed his Ph.D. from Adelphi University, the first African American to earn a Ph.D. from its Institute of Advanced Psychological Studies.

He served as assistant chief psychologist at the Veterans Administration Hospital in East Orange, N.J., where he developed a diversity training program for the staff.

He then became the director of counseling and associate professor of urban planning at Livingston College at Rutgers University and served as associate professor in counseling psychology at the Graduate School of Education, with a joint appointment at the Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology. As program director, he changed the department’s focus to multicultural psychology and family psychology, significantly increasing Black and brown representation within its faculty and students. After retiring in 1998, he was awarded the rank of emeritus professor.

He was committed to advancing human rights and worked with the NAACP and CORE. In May 2006, New Jersey City University presented him with an honorary doctorate. In November 2019, the New Jersey Psychological Association presented him with a lifetime achievement award.

His greatest impact was on the people around him. He mentored many students, even beyond their graduation. He also maintained a private practice for many years.

In 1956, Duncan married Jean DeLaine. They raised four children before divorcing in 1981.

In 1983, he married Jocelyn Coleman Williams. They celebrated the importance of family as they united the children from their previous marriages. Their loving, caring relationship was evident to all.

Since the late 1950s, Duncan had special ties to the Vineyard. This was a favorite vacation spot and was where he met Jocelyn. In 2003 they built their retirement home on family property at Coleman Corners in Oak Bluffs. After retirement, Duncan and Jocelyn split their time between Maryland and Martha’s Vineyard, where they eventually came to live full-time.

He had many interests. He enjoyed sharing current news items, humorous jokes and anecdotes via email. He and Jocelyn enjoyed vacationing, especially in warm climates. An avid duplicate bridge player, he was active with the Bridge Club of Martha’s Vineyard and Island Bridge Club.

He was a modern jazz enthusiast. Sports were another passion. The Cleveland Cavaliers and Rutgers football and basketball teams were his favorites.

Duncan’s humor, laughter, loving nature, and hugs will always be remembered and cherished. He had a quiet faith. In the weeks before his death, he prayed for his children and shared communion with them.

His family is indebted to the Vineyard Nursing Association staff for their compassionate care.

He is survived by his beloved wife Jocelyn; children Brian and his wife Sylvia, Steven and his wife Angela, Janet and her husband Miguel, Debra and her husband Eric; stepson Kyle; and grandchildren Victoria, Steven Jr., Brian Jr., Monica, Kendall, Jelani, Rena, Veronica, Elijah, Daniel and Caleb. He was predeceased by his stepson David. He is survived by David’s wife Angela.

His memorial service will be held from 1 to 4 p.m. on Nov. 20 at The Rutgers Club in East Piscataway, N.J. A local memorial will be held on May 20, 2023 at the Portuguese American Club in Oak Bluffs from 1 to 4 p.m.

Memorial contributions can be made to the New Jersey Association of Black Psychologists at njabpsi.org and 50 Church Street, Suite 102, Montclair, N.J. 07042.