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Obituaries in the News

December 13, 1999

John Nettles

ANNISTON, Ala. (AP) _ The Rev. John Nettles, president of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference in Alabama, died Sunday. He was 56 and had cancer.

Nettles, the SCLC’s only Alabama chapter president since it organized decades ago, was a former member of the State Board of Pardons and Paroles. He was appointed to the board by former Gov. Guy Hunt and later helped Hunt get a rare pardon from the ethics conviction that forced Hunt from office in 1993.

The SCLC was founded in 1957 by a group of ministers shortly after the Montgomery bus boycott. The organization was a major force in the civil rights movement and helped organize the 1963 March on Washington in which Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his ``I Have a Dream″ speech.

Charles Ward

TULSA, Okla. (AP) _ Charles Ward, who spent nearly 30 years in Washington as a top aide to former House Speaker Carl Albert and former Sen. David Boren, died Saturday. He was 81.

``Charlie Ward was one of the greatest public servants that I have ever known. No one spent longer hours or worked harder to help Oklahomans than he did,″ Boren said.

In 1959, at age 41, Ward quit his job as managing editor of a Durant daily newspaper to become Albert’s chief of staff. When Albert retired in 1976, Ward made an unsuccessful bid for the 3rd District congressional seat and was defeated by Rep. Wes Watkins, R-Okla.

After that setback, Ward took a job with the National Association of Retail Druggists until Boren, a newly elected senator from Oklahoma, offered him a job. He retired from Boren’s staff in 1987.

Elizabeth Zimmermann

NEW YORK (AP) _ Elizabeth Zimmermann, whose best-known gift to knitting was a mathematical formula for figuring the proportions of sweaters and other garments, died Nov. 30 at a hospital in Marshfield, Wis., where she lived. She was 89.

Born near Devon, England, Zimmermann learned knitting from her mother. She eventually sold sweaters of her own design to a shop for pocket money when she attended art schools in Europe.

She married, moved to New York and eventually settled in Wisconsin.

Zimmermann submitted her designs for Norwegian-pattern sweaters to Woman’s Day magazine in 1955. Other magazines also accepted her designs, and in 1959, she started her own knitting publication.

She eventually published a newsletter and a mail-order business for knitting supplies, books and video productions under the name Schoolhouse Press. Her books include ``Knitting Around,″ ``Knitting without Tears,″ ``Knitter’s Almanac.″ and ``Knitting Workshop.″

Zimmermann was the host of a knitting program on many public television stations and in 1974, she began a knitting camp under the auspices of the University of Wisconsin. The camp has continued every summer since.

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