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Obituaries in the News

July 8, 1998

ABUJA, Nigeria (AP) _ Moshood Abiola, Nigeria’s most prominent political prisoner, died Tuesday of a heart attack during a meeting with a visiting U.S. delegation. He was 60.

Abiola was the apparent winner of 1993 presidential elections annulled by the military government then in power. Dictator Gen. Sani Abacha, who took power in a coup later that year, jailed Abiola in 1994, accusing him of treason. Abacha died last month of a heart attack.

The U.S. delegation, led by Thomas Pickering, former ambassador to Nigeria, was in the country to meet with the new military leader, Gen. Abdulsalam Abubakar, and to lobby for the release of political prisoners.

Abiola became a rallying point for Nigeria’s disparate opposition groups during his years of imprisonment. U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan visited Nigeria last week and announced that Abubakar was planning to release Abiola and other political prisoners soon.

Abiola amassed a fortune in industries including publishing, shipping, and oil. He also worked for the International Telephone and Telegraph Corp., serving as company chairman for Africa and the Middle East from 1971 to 1988.

Emery Oakland Barnes

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ Emery Oakland Barnes, who played professional football for the Green Bay Packers and later become the first black to serve as speaker of the British Columbian parliament, died of cancer July 1. He was 68.

Barnes, an American by birth and Canadian by choice, died on Canada Day _ in a British Columbia hospital.

A standout athlete at the University of Oregon, Barnes joined the Green Bay Packers in 1956. A year later, he went to play for the Canadian Football League after accusing a Packers teammate of racism. He retired from football after the British Columbia Lions won 1964′s Grey Cup.

Barnes won a seat in British Columbia’s parliament in 1972. He was appointed deputy speaker in 1991 and elected speaker three years later. He won every election since 1972 until his retirement from politics two years ago.

Barnes was inducted into the Oregon Sports Hall of Fame and the British Columbia Sports Hall of Fame in 1986.

Drury R. Brown

LEWISTON, Idaho (AP) _ Drury R. Brown, former editor and publisher of The Morning News, died Friday. He was 93.

With his wife, Verna, and the couple’s two sons, the family formed the Brown Publishing Corp. in 1957 and bought what as then an afternoon paper known as The Daily Bulletin.

Brown’s son took over as publisher of the News in 1972, which by then his father had turned into a morning paper with improved production methods and a larger staff.

Brown also was the recipient of the Jason Lee Award from the Oregon-Idaho Conference of the United Methodist Church for excellence in communication of religious topics in mass media, and in 1971 he received the ``Best Foot Forward″ award from the Blackfoot Chamber of Commerce for his support of the city and his community work.

Jim Burnett

NORTH CANTON, Ohio (AP) _ Jim Burnett, a longtime Ohio broadcaster and former president of the Ohio Associated Press Broadcasters, died Monday at age 72.

Burnett was news director at WHBC AM-FM radio station in Canton for 22 years. He served terms as president, vice president and regional director of the OAPB.

Burnett, who retired in 1988, began his broadcast career in Youngstown. He joined WHBC as a news reporter in 1953 and was appointed assistant news director in 1961 and news director in 1966.

Survivors include his wife, Susie, and three children.

Aphrodite B. Haseotes

DUXBURY, Mass. (AP) _ Aphrodite B. Haseotes, who emigrated as a girl from Greece and with her husband founded the Cumberland Farms milk chain with a single cow, died Sunday at 96.

In 1939, she and her husband, Vasilios S. Haseotes, bought a tract of wooded land on Bear Hill Road in Cumberland, R.I., and started their business.

The company, now based in Canton, has hundreds of retail stores and processes millions of gallons of milk every week.

Gene Letourneau

WATERVILLE, Maine (AP) _ Gene Letourneau, the dean of Maine’s outdoor writers, died Sunday from complications of a stroke. He was 90.

Letourneau’s ``Sportsmen Say″ column was a fixture in the Guy Gannett chain of newspapers in Portland, Waterville and Augusta.

He began his newspaper career in the Waterville bureau of the Portland Evening Express. He soon moved over to the Waterville Sentinel’s staff.

In 1930, Letourneau began his ``Sportsmen Say″ outdoors column, which became an immediate success. Sportsmen and sportswomen from across the state _ and eventually the nation _ began calling and writing him about issues and adventures.

For years, Letourneau combined column-writing with other duties at the paper until he was asked by Guy P. Gannett, founder of the chain _ which isn’t related to Gannett Co. Inc. _ asked Letourneau to become a full-time columnist.

Letourneau’s first career was as a musician. He began playing drums in the pit orchestra at the Waterville Opera House in the early 1920s, providing music for silent films and vaudeville shows.

Survivors include three children, their spouses and eight grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

George Lloyd

LONDON (AP) _ George Lloyd, who wrote 12 symphonies in a late Romantic style and was associated with the Albany Symphony Orchestra, died Friday. He was 85.

He completed a Requiem, scored for chorus and organ, shortly before his death.

Lloyd began playing the violin at 5 and by 10 wrote his first composition. His First Symphony was completed in 1932, and two years later his opera, ``Iernin,″ with a libretto by his father, was produced. His second opera, ``The Serf,″ was also well received in 1938.

Lloyd joined the Royal Marines during World War II and suffered severe post-traumatic stress after his ship was sunk. He was discharged in 1942 and completed his Fourth Symphony in 1946, but years passed before his health and career recovered.

Later in life, his career blossomed with the help of pianist John Ogdon, who commissioned a concerto; conductor Edward Downes; and the Albany Symphony Orchestra in Albany, N.Y., which commissioned his last two symphonies. The Albany orchestra recorded those symphonies and two others.

Yoriko Nagao

TOKYO (AP) _ Yoriko Nagao, an architect who designed a futuristic complex of buildings in Tokyo, died of lung cancer Sunday. She was 52.

Ms. Nagao, who was born Yoriko Ebine, set up her own architectural firm in 1984 with her husband, Tetsuo.

She designed the ARK Hills complex of high-rise office buildings, cultural facilities, a hotel and apartments in Tokyo’s Roppongi area. Designed with state-of-the-art technology, the offices _ completed in 1986 _ are used 24 hours a day.

Other buildings Nagao designed include the 15-story Hotel Nikko Tokyo, which opened near Tokyo Bay in 1996. Last year, she published a book about her battle against cancer.

Helen Wyandt Reihart

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) _ Helen Wyandt Reihart, responsible for a number of firsts in Nebraska and Omaha medicine, died Monday. She was 102.

Mrs. Reihart was the state’s first formally trained medical technologist and was instrumental in setting up the first clinical pathology laboratory at University Hospital. She also is credited with identifying the first case of polio in Omaha.

She joined the University of Nebraska medical college’s faculty in 1923 as a medical technologist and instructor in pathology and bacteriology. She founded the university Medical Center’s medical technology training program, which won national accreditation in the 1937-38 academic year.

Mrs. Reihart retired from the Medical Center in 1968. She was honored at the 50th anniversary of the medical technology training program in 1988 and again this year at the 60th anniversary.

Lenore Romney

LANSING, Mich. (AP) _ Lenore Romney, the widow of former Gov. George Romney and the state’s only first lady to run for U.S. Senate, died Tuesday. She was 89.

George Romney served as chairman and president of American Motors Corp. from 1954 to 1962, when he was elected governor. He unsuccessfully sought the Republican presidential nomination in 1968, then resigned as governor in 1969 to head the Department of Housing and Urban Development under President Nixon.

Mrs. Romney ran for the GOP nomination for U.S. Senate in 1970. She won a tight contest against Robert Huber, a conservative state senator from Oakland County, but lost the general election to popular Democratic incumbent Phillip Hart, who won 67 percent of the vote.

Charles Carr Smith

GAINESVILLE, Ga. (AP) _ Charles Carr Smith, who served as president of the Georgia Associated of Broadcasters and the Georgia Associated Press Broadcasters Association, died Tuesday of cancer. He was 71.

Smith was the general manager and owner of radio station WDEC-FM in Americus between 1948 and 1968. He later owned WPDC-AM and FM in Elizabethtown, Pa., before selling his interests in the stations and moving back to Georgia.

In Gainesville, he directed the Brenau University radio station WBCX-FM and taught broadcasting and speech at the college in the 1980s.

Smith served as a director of the National Association of Broadcasters from 1965 to 1970. He was inducted into the Georgia Association of Broadcasters in 1996.

Survivors include his wife, Sue Marshall Smith; a sister, three daughters and three grandsons.

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