Malcolm Stamper, 80, who became president of Boeing Co. after spearheading the development of the 747 jumbo jet, died June 14 at his home in Seattle. He had prostate cancer.
Mr. Stamper was born in Detroit. He received an electrical engineering degree from Georgia Tech and worked for General Motors Corp. before joining Boeing in 1962 as head of the aerospace electronics division.
Three years later, he was named vice president and general manager of Boeing's turbine division. He then headed the 747 program, overseeing production of the world's largest passenger plane even as the factory was being built around it in Everett, north of Seattle.
As vice president and general manager of Boeing Commercial Airplane Co., he directed the development, production and sale of the 707, 727, 737, 747 and SST aircraft before he was named corporate president in 1972.
Mr. Stamper became Boeing's president and a member of the board of directors in 1972. In 1985, he became vice chairman. He retired in 1990.
Forbes magazine once reported that under his direction, "the company wandered far from aerospace as it suffered from the phase-out of the Apollo space program and a slump in air travel related to the energy crisis." Boeing irrigated desert land in Oregon, managed low-income housing for the U.S. government and manufactured boats, furniture and light-rail cars.
Soon after his retirement, he founded Storytellers Ink, a family-run business that publishes children's books. He was publisher; his wife, Mari Guinan Stamper, was the editor; and his daughter, Mary Lynam, was president.
He went on to form a not-for-profit program called Operation Outreach aimed at eliminating illiteracy. He raised money from businesses, foundations and individual donors and poured some of his own money into the effort, which gave books to schoolchildren.
He climbed mountains, skied, ran marathons, painted and grew orchids.
Survivors include his wife of 59 years, six children, 13 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.