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Obituaries in the News

June 14, 2000

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) _ Garrett Eckbo, a leader of the modern landscape architecture movement, died May 14 after suffering a stroke. He was 89.

Eckbo, who studied under Bauhaus founder Walter Gropius, did his first major work at migrant farmworkers’ encampments in the Central Valley for the New Deal-era Farm Security Administration.

Eckbo designed gardens for Hollywood luminaries including Gary Cooper and Louis B. Mayer.

In the 1950s, for the Beverly Hills swimsuit company Cole of California, Eckbo designed a pool with a series of diving platforms that allowed models to disappear unnoticed into its depths and surface like Esther Williams.

In the 1960s, he banned cars from the center of the University of New Mexico when he designed new outdoor spaces to unify the sprawling campus. He also created the Fresno Mall, the first pedestrian mall in the middle of a California city.

William Casley Killgallon

BRYAN, Ohio (AP) _ William Casley Killgallon, who helped come up with the name for the Etch A Sketch, died Thursday. He suffered a stroke three weeks ago and a heart attack a few days later. He was 87.

Killgallon was a vice president at the Ohio Art Co. when it acquired the rights to the toy, which had been produced in England as the DoodleMaster Magic Screen.

Killgallon and another executive came up with the Etch A Sketch name.

Etch A Sketch _ which has two knobs that turn to make doodles and can be shaken to make the images disappear _ was an instant success in the early 1960s and billed as the hottest toy since the Hula-Hoop.

Ohio Art has sold more than 100 million Etch A Sketches, which are still made in Bryan.

Harry Knudson

SEATTLE (AP) _ Harry ``Bud″ Knudson, a pioneering business educator and author of 13 books on business management and organizational theory, died Friday of lung cancer. He was 69.

Knudson’s emphasis on the human touch was a recurring theme in his books, many of which suggested ways to improve worker motivation.

He taught at the Harvard and Stanford business schools before the University of Washington, where he taught from 1959 through last year.

Robert J. Lurtsema

BOSTON (AP) _ Robert J. Lurtsema, a classical music show host with a sonorous voice and unique delivery who became a fixture of the Boston radio scene over nearly three decades, died Monday of lung disease. He was 68.

Lurtsema, who worked at WGBH-FM for more than 28 years, is well-known to classical music buffs as the host of ``Morning pro musica,″ which could be heard throughout the Northeast.

For 22 years, from the early 1970s to October 1993, ``Morning pro musica,″ ran in the mornings seven days a week. Since 1993, it has been aired on weekends.

Among the unique things about Lurtsema were his deep voice and his slow and deliberate speech.

Lurtsema also was known for the tape of bird sounds, which changed with the season, that opened every program.

Horace Elmo Nichols

ATLANTA (AP) _ Horace Elmo ``Nick″ Nichols, a staunch supporter of the death penalty who served 32 years on the bench, including three years as chief justice of the Georgia Supreme Court, died Thursday of a stroke. He was 87.

In 1966, Gov. Carl Sanders appointed Nichols to the Supreme Court, where he was chief justice from 1975 to 1980.

While on the state’s highest court, Nichols worked to consolidate criminal appeals in death penalty cases. In 1980, he successfully called on the General Assembly to reduce delays in carrying out death sentences.

He was outspoken in his support of the death penalty, frequently saying that most murderers are ``just mean as hell.″

Nichols was a state assistant attorney general before Gov. M.E. Thompson named him judge of the Rome Circuit Superior Court in 1948. He next served as a Court of Appeals judge before going to the Supreme Court.

Marlin VanElderen

GENEVA (AP) _ Marlin VanElderen, the American editor of the Dictionary of the Ecumenical Movement and other publications of the World Council of Churches, died Monday of a heart attack. He was 54.

VanElderen had nearly finished the second edition of the 1,196-page dictionary when he died.

A member of the Christian Reformed Church in North America, VanElderen moved to Geneva in 1982 where he joined the headquarters of the World Council of Churches. The body aims to improve relations among religious denominations.

VanElderen was managing editor of the council’s Ecumenical Review, and contributed as an editor and writer in ``countless″ books and brochures.

The World Council of Churches is a fellowship of 337 mainly Protestant and Orthodox churches in more than 100 countries.

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