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William Hickman Ewing

July 27, 1996

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) _ William Hickman Ewing, one of the winningest prep football coaches in Memphis history, died Thursday after an extended illness. He was 83.

Ewing’s oldest son is W. Hickman Ewing Jr., the deputy independent counsel for the government’s Whitewater investigation in Little Rock, Ark.

The elder Ewing started coaching at South Side High School in 1936 and later coached at Bishop Byrne. During his career, his teams won 117 games, lost 42 losses and tied five times.

In between those two long-term jobs, he served as Shelby County Court clerk. In 1965, he pleaded guilty to two larceny charges in connection with shortages in the clerk’s office. He served 18 months in state prison in Nashville, winning praise for being a teacher in the penitentiary school.

In 1968 Ewing returned to coaching at Bishop Byrne, where he was selected as Memphis Interscholastic Athletic Association coach of the year in 1970 after going 10-0 in the regular season. He retired after that season, citing health reasons.

Hector P. Garcia

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas (AP) _ Hector Garcia, a physician who led the fight for equal treatment of Hispanics and who founded the American GI Forum in 1948, died Friday of pneumonia. He was 82.

President Clinton called Garcia a national hero who ``fought for half a century for civil and educational rights of Mexican Americans.″

In 1948, two years after beginning his career as a doctor, Garcia created the American GI Forum to fight for Hispanic veterans’ rights.

In 1949 he took up the fight of Pvt. Felix Longoria, a Texan whose family was denied use of a hometown funeral chapel because ``the Anglo people would not stand for it.″

Longoria’s story ran on The Associated Press wire, and, within days, the case drew ire nationwide. Then-Sen. Lyndon B. Johnson intervened, and Longoria was given a hero’s burial at Virginia’s Arlington National Cemetery.

Under Garcia’s leadership, the GI Forum expanded its focus to fight discrimination in other areas, including courts and schools.

Known as ``Doctor Hector,″ Garcia practiced medicine for 50 years in Corpus Christi until closing his office in March.

Garcia was awarded the Bronze Star with six battle stars for service during World War II. After the war he served as an ambassador to the United Nations and as a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, as well as an adviser to several U.S. presidents.

Dennis Sorweide

EAGAN, Minn. (AP) _ Dennis Sorweide, who helped negotiate the 1993 investment agreement credited with saving Northwest Airlines from bankruptcy, died Wednesday of cancer. He was 56.

Sorweide was a longtime pilot and union negotiator for Northwest and Republic airlines.

A captain for Northwest, Sorweide was a key player in the 1993 agreement in which employees of the airline took more than $880 million in wage concessions for 32 percent ownership.

In 1992-93, he was negotiating committee chairman for Northwest pilots.

Kenneth Hollister Straus

NEW YORK (AP) _ Kenneth Hollister Straus, the last member of the Straus family to be a top executive of R.H. Macy & Company, died Wednesday after a brief illness. He was 71.

The Straus family headed the New York department store chain from soon after its founding in 1858, when Lazarus Straus, an immigrant from Germany, became a partner with Rowland Hussey Macy.

The family remained at the helm until 1968, when Straus’ father, Jack I. Straus, gave up his position as chairman and chief executive of Macy’s.

Kenneth Straus began working at the store in 1947. When he retired in 1986, he was company director, chairman of corporate buying and senior vice president for domestic and international buying.

Macy’s was later bought by Federated Department Stores.

Dirk West

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) _ Dirk West, who chronicled more than 30 years of Southwest Conference football history with hilarious and sometimes scathing newspaper cartoons, died Friday of a heart attack. He was 67.

West was a local children’s television pioneer in the 1950s as ``Uncle Dirk″ on what is now KLBK-TV, and he served one term as mayor from 1978-80 after four years as a city councilman.

However, it was his cartooning talent _ that he first displayed at Texas Tech’s student newspaper, The University Daily _ that earned him his greatest acclaim.

A compilation of his work, ``The SWC Cartoon Book,″ was released last year.

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