Raphael L. Cooke J.D. ’50, April 8, 2011. Cooke farmed all of his life, practiced law, and also served in World War II. He is survived by his wife, JoAnn; sons Mark and Joe; daughters Mary, Meg, and Bridget; five grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.
H.J. Belton Hamilton J.D. ’53, April 15, 2011, age 86, of natural causes. Hamilton was born in the Deep South in 1925, the grandson of a slave, yet he became part of a small group of influential black professionals in Portland in the 1950s and 1960s who broke racial barriers in medicine, law, politics, and journalism. Hamilton, who was the first African American to graduate from Stanford University in 1949, went on to become Oregon’s first black assistant state attorney general, the state’s first black federal administrative law judge, and board president of the Urban League of Portland, all while mentoring future lawyers and judges and serving as a leader in his church and various civic groups. His passionate belief in an open and integrated society, where people were free to make their own choices, and his fearlessness in being a social pioneer, extended famously to his personal life. In 1957, he married fellow University of Oregon student Midori Minamoto, whose Japanese American family was sent to an internment camp in Idaho during World War II. The couple bought a home in West Linn and raised two children to celebrate their dual heritage at a time when they were often the only students of color in their public school classrooms.
Jack H. Cairns J.D. ’54, August 8, 2011, age 87. A graduate of Central High School in Pueblo, Colorado, Cairns enjoyed brief careers in a movie theater and a steel mill before earning a degree in biochemistry from the University of Oregon in 1947. His study was interrupted by service in the U.S. Army stateside as a corpsman during World War II. Following college, Cairns worked as “a traveling pharmaceutical detail man.” He met his future wife, Mary Margaret Leutzinger, in Reno, Nevada, on New Years’ Eve in 1948. The couple moved to Portland in 1950, and Cairns entered Northwestern College of Law (which later merged with Lewis & Clark to become Lewis & Clark Law School) that fall while working full time. He practiced law in Portland from 1955 until 1967.
Cairns began teaching night classes at the law school in 1955 and became one of its trustees in 1958. He continued as a professor following the law school’s merger with Lewis & Clark College in 1965. Three years later, Cairns was named dean of the law school. He restarted his law practice in 1970 and continued in that pursuit until 1987, when he turned his focus to his property management business. Cairns was an adventuresome man who loved hunting and fishing with his buddies, often traveling to Mexico and Canada. He is survived by his wife of nearly 62 years, Margie; daughter Jan Robbins; son John; three grandsons; and two nephews and two nieces.
Garth Ford Steltenpohl J.D. ’54, February 3, 2011, age 83. Steltenpohl joined the U.S. Army immediately after high school and was a paratrooper in the 181st Airborne Division. While a law student, he met and married Doretha Mae Waters. They settled in the Portland area, where they started their family and he began his 34-year legal career. He retired in 1988, and they built their dream house in central Oregon. Steltenpohl loved being outdoors, and his favorite pastimes included camping, hunting, and fishing with his family and friends. During retirement, he and his wife enjoyed trips to various destinations around the world. He is survived by his wife, Doretha; son Charles; daughters Barbara Fahrenholz, Becky Larson, and Karla Thompson; 14 grandchildren; and eight great-grandchildren.
H. Ronald Bates B.S. ’56, June 4, 2011, age 76, of pancreatic cancer.
Bruce Whitney Towsley J.D. ’56, March 8, 2011, age 85. Towsley served in the U.S. Army Air Corps during World War II and earned his bachelor’s degree from Whitman College. He moved to Portland in the 1950s, lived in Corbett from 1970 to 1981, and resided in Troutdale from 1981 until his death. In 1991, he married Helen Redden. Towsley offered pro bono legal aid to seniors, volunteered with the Oregon Lions Sight & Hearing Foundation, and coached baseball and soccer. Towsley attended Cherry Park Presbyterian Church, where he served as an elder. He was preceded in death by his wife in 2005. Survivors include son Doug Towsley; daughter Gail Towsley; stepsons Kevin Moore, Jim Redden, and Tom Redden; stepdaughters Susan Moore and Christy Redden; and three grandchildren.
Millard “Mac” Becker J.D. ’57, March 26, 2011, age 82. Born and raised in Tigard, Becker attended Oregon State University as an undergraduate. He served in the U.S. Army from 1952 to 1954 before founding a successful law practice in Portland, which he ran for over 40 years. He had a passion for competitive trap shooting, camping, hunting, and fishing, and he was a skilled cook. Most important, he was a devoted husband, father, and grandfather, who loved his family above all else. His wife, Evelyn, preceded him in death in 2003. Survivors include his brother, Orlien Becker; children James Becker, Teresa Curdy, Mark Becker, and Mary Becker; three grandchildren; and a large extended family in the Pacific Northwest and beyond.
Jim Blair B.A. ’57, May 17, 2011, age 75, in Bakersfield, California. Blair was born in Hankow, Hupeh, China, to the daughter of a Lutheran missionary and a British navy man. After spending his early years in China—including a stint in an internment camp during World War II—Blair and his family crossed the Pacific Ocean on the Queen Mary to the United States. The family settled in Portland, where Blair attended Grant High School. He later worked as an apprentice to a cabinetmaker so he could earn money to attend college. While at Lewis & Clark, he met Barbara Anne Berry B.A ’57; they married a few days after graduation. The couple moved to Santa Monica, California, where Blair worked for McDonnell Douglas. Later, they moved to Ridgecrest, California, where Blair worked for the Naval Air Weapons Center China Lake. He had two sons and was an active member of Ridgecrest Presbyterian Church.
Don Rochon B.S. ’60, June 20, 2011, age 73, of cancer in Bellingham, Washington. Rochon received his master’s degree from the University of Colorado. He worked as a nuclear chemist for the Hanford Atomic Products Plant in Richland, Washington, and for Atlantic Richfield in Chicago and Bellingham. He was married to Donna Fields Rochon, and they had a son and a daughter.
Gary Boggs B.S. ’64, M.A.T. ’68, April 14, 2011, age 69, from complications related to cancer in Rockaway Beach. Born in Kentucky, Boggs moved at age 2 with his family to Vancouver, Washington. He graduated from Hudson’s Bay High School in 1959. A health and physical education major at Lewis & Clark, Boggs was an all-American athlete in three sports: football, wrestling, and track. He taught history and retired in 2001 after serving as head football coach at Fort Vancouver High School for 34 years. Over the course of his career, he was honored with numerous awards and accolades for his leadership and was inducted into several athletic and coaching halls of fame. Boggs and his wife of 34 years, Ellen, lived in Vancouver until 2004, when they built a house in Rockaway Beach on the Oregon Coast. He came out of retirement to coach a final high school football season at Neah-Kah-Nie High School in fall 2010. Boggs was a member of the ROMEO (Retired Old Men Eating Out) book club in Manzanita. He attended the United Methodist Church in Nehalem and served on the Tillamook Futures Council.
Holly Coomes B.S. ’67, March 8, 2011, age 65, after a lengthy illness. A fifth-generation native of Sacramento County, California, Coomes was the eldest of three children. As a sophomore theatre major at Lewis & Clark, she spent a semester abroad with the USO entertaining servicemen throughout Asia, an experience that opened her eyes to new cultures and the thrill of travel. Her post-graduation jobs included stints as a restaurant manager and as a field director for the Girl Scouts of America. She continued performing and added her directorial touches to a full-scale musical, A Woman Got It Done, based on the life of her grandmother, Barbara Comstock Morse. Throughout her life, Coomes was passionate supporter of the arts. She was on the board of trustees and a committee chair of the Sacramento Theatre Company. She married Joseph Coomes in 1985, and they traveled extensively, for pleasure and in conjunction with his law practice.
Allan D. Sobel J.D. ’77, November 23, 2010, age 63, at the Sun Home Hospice Care Center. Sobel practiced law from 1977 to 1997 in Oregon and Michigan, primarily representing defendants in criminal proceedings and parties in professional malpractice actions. From 1997 to 2000, he served as executive director and general counsel of the Michigan Judicial Tenure commission, an organization responsible for enforcement of the Code of Judicial Conduct in Michigan. From 2000 to 2006, he held the position of executive director of the American Judicature Society, an independent, national, nonpartisan organization of judges, lawyers, and other members of the public who seek to improve the justice system. Sobel also served as the first full-time director of the Arlin M. Adams Center for Law and Society at Susquehanna University in Pennsylvania. He married Elayne Weiss Sobel on November 25, 1977. In the months prior to his death, he helped create the Central Susquehanna Valley Mediation Center, a nonprofit designed to help community members resolve child custody and other conflicts through mediation rather than litigation. Survivors include his mother; wife; daughters Rebecca Cornish and Lee Portwood; and two grandsons.
Kurt L. Maul J.D. ’85, March 18, 2011, age 59. Maul was born and raised in the Portland metropolitan area, where he attended local schools. He graduated from Portland State University with a B.S. in economics. After graduating from law school, he became a sole practitioner who focused on business law. Maul was a history aficionado who enjoyed traveling. Friends and associates knew him as witty and kind. He was a lover of plants and animals, and was an especially avid fan of the Oregon Ducks. Maul is survived by his wife, Sharon Stroheker; his father, Dale Maul; two sisters; two aunts; and several nieces and nephews.
Jason Hale Eaton J.D. ’95, February 25, 2011, age 41, following a brief illness. Eaton earned his bachelor’s degree with honors from the University of Arizona. At Lewis & Clark Law School, he received honors in oral advocacy as part of the first-year moot court program; he served as associate editor of the Environmental Law Review; and he worked as a tax research fellow. He also published “Creating Confusion: The Tenth Circuit’s Rocky Mountain Arsenal Decision.” Eaton was admitted to the Georgia State Bar in 1995 and the Oregon State Bar in 1998. He served as a lieutenant JAG in the U.S. Navy from 1995 to 1998 before continuing his legal career in Oregon. He was a member of the First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ). Eaton is survived by his mother, Mary Eaton; his sister Meghan Eaton Aragon; a nephew; and his daughters, Lauren, Madison, and Hannah.
Fields Leaves Enduring Legacy
Fred W. Fields, a staunch friend and advocate for Lewis & Clark for more than a quarter century, died December 13, 2011, at age 88.
Born in 1923, Fields grew up on a farm near Alexandria, Indiana. He began his college studies at Ball State and Indiana universities before being drafted into the Army Air Force during World War II. For nearly four years, he taught instrument flying and navigation. After the war, he resumed his studies in mechanical engineering at Purdue University.
In 1947, Fields went to work as a junior engineer with Coe Manufacturing Company. That association grew into a lifelong commitment, as he advanced through the management ranks and eventually bought the company from its founding family. His work with Coe brought him to the West Coast. In 1958, he married Portlander Suzanne Schoenfeldt. Together they gave generously of their time and treasure to many charities. Their long and happy life together ended with Sue’s death in February 2010.
Fields joined the Lewis & Clark Board of Trustees in 1985 and served for 21 years. From 2001 to 2004, he served as board chair. As a life trustee, he remained deeply involved in the college, providing counsel to its leadership and support for our students.
In 1990, Fields completed a match for a challenge grant that established the Morgan S. Odell Professor- ship in the Humanities. In 1993, he pledged the lead gift for the Fred W. Fields Center for the Visual Arts. These are just two of his many contributions of financial support, wisdom, time, and leadership for which the Lewis & Clark community will long be grateful.
“Fred cared deeply about Lewis & Clark,” says President Barry Glassner. “Few have been more supportive of our efforts. His philanthropy and leadership set an inspiring example for others.”
Fields requested that his memorial service be held at Lewis & Clark. His service will take place on January 21 at 2 p.m. in Agnes Flanagan Chapel, with a reception following.
Former Faculty Remembered
John Crist, professor emeritus of sociology, died August 10, 2011, at age 93, in Gwynedd, Pennsylvania.
A native of Washington State, Crist began his career as a chiropractor, then returned to school to earn his baccalaureate degree at George Fox in 1944, his master’s at the University of Iowa in 1945, and his doctorate in sociology at the University of Missouri in 1951. From 1952 until 1965, he taught at Dennison University, where he founded the Family Life Department. During his time at Dennison, he spent a sabbatical year at the Menninger Clinic and for years thereafter, maintained a part-time practice in psychotherapy and marriage counseling.
Crist accepted a tenured position in sociology at Lewis & Clark in 1965. In the company of his first wife, Dorothy Varley Bingham, he led numerous off-campus programs. Crist identified himself as a “learning facilitator” and came to be known for his innovative approaches to teaching. He retired from Lewis & Clark in 1985.
Reared as a Roman Catholic, Crist became a Quaker in the 1940s and was active for years with the American Friends Service Committee. He was an avid photographer, hiker, and nature lover. As a gardener, he was also ahead of his time, practicing and advocating organic techniques since the 1950s.
In 1987, Crist married Margery Frank, the youngest of the three children of Lloyd and Edna Frank, who remembers fondly her years growing up on the Fir Acres estate. Together they shared a love of travel.
Crist is survived by his wife, Marge; his children, Patience, Constance, Peter, and Jonathan; and four grandchildren.
Robert Lee Myers B.S. ’48, professor emeritus of law and a former trustee of Lewis & Clark, died March 13, 2011, at age 84.
Myers practiced law in Portland for 22 years and was a partner in the firm of Schuler, Rankin, Myers & Walsh. He taught at Lewis & Clark Law School for another 18 years, during which he received the Leo Levenson Award for Teaching Excellence. He retired from the law school in 1990. A member of the Oregon State Board of Bar Examiners for three years, he was the board’s chair in 1968 and served as secretary and chair of the Oregon State Bar Disciplinary Rules Committee.
Myers served as president of the Lewis & Clark Alumni Association, a member of the Lewis & Clark Board of Trustees, and executive secretary of the Oregon Commission on Judicial Fitness.
He loved the Pacific Northwest and enjoyed camping, fishing, hiking, sailing, golf, and spending time with his family. Survivors include his wife, Annette; sons Doug and Eric; daughter Enid Nielsen; two grandsons; and one great-grandson.
John Keil Richards B.S. ’46, professor emeritus of music, died July 26, 2011, at age 93, in his Portland home after a brief illness. Richards was an accomplished musician, teacher, and mentor, who was revered for his ability to nurture the best qualities in each of his students.
Richards earned his master’s degree in music from the University of Southern California in 1947 and his doctorate at the Philadelphia Conservatory of Music in 1955.
An outstanding scholar and director, he taught in Lewis & Clark’s music department from 1947 to 1962 and then in the education department until his retirement in 1985. He also chaired the music department, directed summer sessions and teacher training for the deaf, and served as associate dean of the faculty.
Richards served as Lewis & Clark’s director of bands for many years, conducted the Portland Symphonic Band for nearly three decades, and was the principal tuba player with the Oregon Symphony Orchestra for 52 years. “Dr. John,” as he was known to the Metropolitan Youth Symphony, also conducted MYS from 1994 to 2009.
Richards organized and conducted A Tuba Christmas, a favorite Portland holiday ritual. He never let a little wet weather dampen the crowd’s spirits, as more than 200 tuba, sousaphone, baritone, and euphonium players would take over Pioneer Courthouse Square in downtown Portland. Many called the group’s rendition of Silent Night magical.
Richards devoted countless hours to preserving the musical history of Oregon’s Aurora Colony, a utopian Christian community that thrived from 1856 to 1921. Often the source material was sketchy; however, as Richards once said, “If you have the musical skeleton and are skilled in music theory, you know what the next note may be.”
Richards is survived by his wife, Cheri Ann Egbers Richards B.S. ’56; four children, Carol Richards Ellis B.A. ’73, M.Ed. ’74; Gloria Richards; Jonelle Richards B.A. ’80; and John Keil Richards Jr.; and seven grandchildren. His first wife, Dorothy Farmer Richards B.A. ’65, M.A.T. ’79 died in 2002 after 61 years of marriage. Their daughter, Melody Speros B.S. ’64 died in 1997. Their son, Dr. Jay Richards B.S. ’78, died in 2006.
Alan “Al” G. Robertson, a former associate professor of education and director of the college’s Graduate Studies Program, died July 22, 2011, at age 86, of emphysema.
Robertson was a musician, a teacher, and a realtor, who saw a connection between all three careers: guiding people toward a good experience, whether it be listening to music, learning new things, or finding the perfect home.
After serving in the U.S. Navy in World War II, Robertson pursued a career in music. He was the longtime band director at Beaverton High School, where he developed the music department into a strong and competitive program.
After earning a master’s degree in music at Lewis & Clark and doing graduate work at Standford University, he was selected as an administrator of the new Tongue Point Job Corps program near Astoria. In 1966, he was recruited to teach at Lewis & Clark, where he remained for 11 years.
Robertson was active in the Portland Rose Festival, first as a volunteer then as a director for 35 years. He was chair of the Starlight Parade, the Festival of Bands, and the Stage Band Classic. On two occasions, he received the Rose Festival’s Distinguished Service Award. He later transitioned to a career in real estate with his wife, Barbara Parry Robertson B.S. ’57, M.A.T. ’77, who had previously worked as an art teacher in Portland. Over the course of his career, he served as president of both the Washington County Association of Realtors and the Oregon Association of Realtors.
Survivors include his wife, Barbara; four sons, Richard B.S. ’77, Donald, Steven B.A. ’73, and Gregory; two stepsons, Michael Simon and Mark Simon; 14 grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren.
Noted African American Studies Scholar Dies
Rudolph Byrd B.A. ’75, Goodrich C. White Professor of American Studies at Emory University, died Oct. 21, 2011, at age 58, after a long battle with cancer. Byrd was the founder and director of Emory’s James Weldon Johnson Institute for the Study of Race and Difference, which fosters new scholarship, teaching, and public dialogue on the history and enduring legacy of the fight for civil and human rights. Most recently, he helped inaugurate a partnership with Emory, the Center for Civil and Human Rights, and CNN, by formulating a community forum program on contemporary civic issues called CNN Dialogues.
Byrd was the founding cochair of the Alice Walker Literary Society, and helped bring the author’s archives to Emory. The author of numerous books, he published a new critical edition of Jean Toomer’s Cane, with Harvard scholar Henry Louis Gates Jr. in 2011. Byrd frequently commented on the modern civil rights movement, images of blacks in the media, politics, and intergenerational dialogues, as well as race, gender, sexuality, and politics.
“For many of us, Rudolph was not only a symbol of dignity, propriety, determination, elegance, and stamina, he embodied what it meant to live with purposefulness and grace, even to the very end,” said Earl Lewis, executive vice president of academic affairs and provost at Emory. “As others have said more than once … Rudolph remained the consummate teacher: he taught us to live and how to die.”
Community Mourns Student’s Death
Isaac Clark CAS ’12, age 21, died October 17, 2011, from head injuries sustained in a skateboarding accident.
During his short life, Clark made a significant impact on others with his intense passion for life and learning. At Lewis & Clark, he majored in physics and math and was inducted into Phi Beta Kappa as a junior. He was also a member of Sigma Pi Sigma, a national physics honor society. Clark looked forward to one day earning a Ph.D. in physics.
Clark was born in Everett, Washington, and moved to Keizer before his first birthday. In 2008, he graduated from McNary High School, where he was a valedictorian.
From an early age, Clark expressed his desire to achieve and to be special. He was known for studying many hours beyond the school day. He grew up playing soccer, football, basketball, and baseball. Introduced to a drum set at age 13, Clark entertained his family daily with his self-taught skills, later playing the drums for services at Salem First Christian Church and for his high school band, Zombie Warrior Enterprise. He took drum and piano lessons at Lewis & Clark and performed in a variety of musical ensembles. Most significantly, says his family, he had a kind and loving heart.
Survivors include his younger sister, Natalie Clark; his mother, Linda Olson; his father, Bud Clark; his stepfather, Bob Olson; his grandparents; three step-siblings; and many loving aunts, uncles, cousins and dear friends.
Donations in Clark’s memory may be made to the Isaac Clark Memorial Fund for Physics and Math at Lewis & Clark College.