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Obituaries in the News

June 1, 2004

William A. Brower

WASHINGTON (AP) _ William A. Brower, an award-winning reporter, editor and columnist during a 50-year career with The Blade in Toledo, Ohio, died Friday. He was 87.

Brower was in hospice care and appeared to have suffered from Alzheimer’s disease, said his son, William A. Brower Jr.

Brower was the first black reporter hired by The Blade. His 1951 series ``Fifteen Million Americans,″ about the living conditions of blacks in America, was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize.

His numerous awards include the Lifetime Achievement Award from the National Association of Black Journalists in 1996. He was selected as a Pulitzer Prize juror in 1978 and 1979.

Toledo’s William A. Brower Bridge is named for him.


Magne Havnaa

OSLO, Norway (AP) _ Former world champion boxer Magne Havnaa drowned Saturday in a boating accident near his home, police said. He was 40.

Havnaa won the WBO cruiserweight world championship with a fifth-round knockout against American Richard Pultz on May 17, 1990. Havnaa retired in 1993 with a 19-3 record.

Risoer district Sheriff Jostein Hansen said that the cause of Saturday’s accident had not been determined.

``The way it looks now, there may have been a technical failure with the steering system,″ Hansen told The Associated Press. ``Something happened to make the small boat make a very sharp swing.″

Havnaa and his 38-year-old wife, Turid, were thrown from their 16-foot boat near Risoer, about 100 miles from Oslo, Hansen said.

His wife was taken to a hospital for cuts and bruises.


William Manchester

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) _ Historian William Manchester, who brought a novelist’s flair to his stirring biographies of such 20th century giants as Winston Churchill, Douglas MacArthur and John F. Kennedy, died of cancer Tuesday. He was 82.

Manchester died in his sleep at his home in Middletown, his daughter Laurie Manchester said.

Manchester wrote 18 books, including two novels, but was best known in recent years for his magisterial, multivolume biography of Churchill, ``The Last Lion.″ Two strokes prevented Manchester from completing the much-anticipated third volume, covering most of the World War II years.

Manchester was a confidant and companion to JFK.

The friendship helped provide Manchester with material for his breakthrough book _ the 1962 ``Portrait of a President,″ the first of three books he wrote about Kennedy.

His 1978 biography of MacArthur, ``American Caesar,″ received a National Book Award nomination and became the basis for a movie.

He was a reporter for the Daily Oklahoman in Oklahoma City and for The (Baltimore) Sun, where he was a war correspondent.

Manchester left daily journalism in 1955, the year he began his long association with Wesleyan University in Connecticut. He became managing editor of publications there, a job he held for 10 years. He recently was adjunct professor of history and writer-in-residence.


Frank Newman

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) _ Frank Newman, a former president of the University of Rhode Island and a national leader in education reform, died Saturday. He was 77.

Newman died at Miriam Hospital, said hospital spokeswoman Nancy Cawley.

Newman was the university’s eighth president, serving from 1974 to 1983. He’s credited with reversing declining enrollment, and transforming the school into an institution recognized for state-of-the-art research and learning. The university named its renovated admission building after him in 2002.

He was the author of influential reports and books on education. His 1971 ``Report on Higher Education,″ known as the Newman Report, and ``The Second Newman Report: National Policy and Higher Education″ in 1974 were considered critical policy documents in the early days of educational reform in the United States.

Newman also served for 14 years as president of the Education Commission of the States, a nonprofit organization that helps governors, lawmakers and other state education leaders develop and implement policies to improve education.


James Rice

HICO, Texas (AP) _ James Rice, the author and illustrator of more than 60 children’s books, died Sunday. He was 70.

Rice died at his home in Hico, Texas. A cause of death was not immediately released, the Stephenville Empire-Tribune reported Tuesday.

His first book, ``A Cajun Night Before Christmas,″ was published in 1973. It was followed by a string of books, including various spin-offs of the ``Night Before Christmas″ theme.

Rice also taught art at several universities and visited schools to teach children about writing and illustrating.

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