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Obituaries in the News

March 15, 2002

FAIRFAX, Va. (AP) _ Richard M. ``Dick″ Braznell, a former St. Louis sports commentator who played briefly with the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Bears in the early 1950s, died Sunday of a stroke and complications from Parkinson’s disease. He was 73.

Braznell was a starting halfback in the late 1940s at Missouri, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in education in 1950. He later played in the NFL.

During the 1970s, he was an analyst for local radio station KMOX for University of Missouri football games.

Before retiring in 1993, Braznell worked for nearly 20 years as sales manager and vice president of Braznell Ink Co. of St. Louis, a family-owned maker of ink for the printing industry. The company later became Inx International.

Bert Danher

LONDON (AP) _ Bert Danher, the crossword compiler at The Daily Telegraph newspaper who produced a special puzzle for the Queen Mother Elizabeth on her 100th birthday, died March 4 in his home town of Oxton in northwest England. He was 75.

Danher, who liked to introduce himself as ``the man who is Thursday,″ because his puzzles appeared on Thursdays, was considered the most inventive of The Daily Telegraph’s 10 compilers. Anagrams were a favorite, and Danher’s love of classical music also was evident in many of his clues.

Born in Liverpool, Danher became a clerk with the Liverpool Cotton Commission after leaving school. During World War II, he trained as a Royal Air Force crewman, but never saw active service.

Danher spent eight years as an insurance inspector in Wales and then worked as a music teacher in the Liverpool area.

In 1974 Danher became a professional compiler, contributing puzzles to several London papers, including The Guardian and The Times.

Sir Raymond Firth

LONDON (AP) _ Eminent social anthropologist Sir Raymond Firth, noted for his studies of Pacific cultures, died Feb. 22. He was 100.

Firth, who retired from the London School of Economics in 1968 but continued writing until the end of his life, was most famous for his studies of the Tikopia people of a 4-mile-long Polynesian atoll in the British Solomon Islands.

He lectured at the University of Sydney from 1930 to 1932, and later at LSE.

He had studied for his Ph.D. under the influential anthropologist Bronislaw Malinowski, and succeeded Malinowski as LSE’s head of anthropology in 1938. Firth became a professor of the University of London in 1944 and professor emeritus after his 1968 retirement.

During World War II, Firth served with the British Admiralty’s geographical intelligence unit. In 1944 he was made secretary of the Colonial Social Science Research.

In 1957, Firth edited one of his best-known books: ``Man and Culture: An Evaluation of the Work of Bronislaw Malinowski.″

He was knighted in 1973.

Sherman V. Hasbrouck

WEST POINT, N.Y. (AP) _ Retired Brig. Gen. Sherman V. Hasbrouck, the oldest living graduate of the U.S. Military Academy, died Wednesday. He was 103.

Hasbrouck, whose military career spanned more than three decades, died at the Long Island State Veterans Home in Stony Brook, N.Y.

Hasbrouck entered West Point in 1918 and graduated as a second lieutenant of infantry, receiving his diploma from Gen. John Pershing in 1920.

During World War II, Hasbrouck rose to the post of commanding general of the 97th Infantry Division Artillery in the United States, Europe and the Pacific.

In his 37-year military career, Hasbrouck was awarded numerous medals for his bravery including Legion of Merit and Bronze Star. He retired in 1955.

Hasbrouck was to have gone to the U.S. Mint near West Point on Thursday to press the first silver dollar commemorating the military academy’s 200th anniversary.

Rudolf Hell

BERLIN (AP) _ Rudolf Hell, a German inventor who pioneered technology that led to the fax and the color scanner, has died, officials said Thursday. He was 100.

The announcement came from the northern German city of Kiel, where Hell rebuilt his business in the 1940s after his factory in Berlin was destroyed during World War II.

Hell’s landmark invention was a machine for transmitting text that electronically broke up letters into a stream of dots reassembled at the receiving end, in effect the first telefax. The commercial success of his 1929 ``Hell Recorder″ allowed him to found his own company.

During World War II in Nazi Germany, Hell worked on encoding machines. After the war, he resumed business in 1947.

An electronically controlled engraver unveiled in 1954 made photo publishing easier for newspapers, and an early version of the color scanner followed in 1963. Hell also was a pioneer of electronic digital typesetting in the 1960s.

Hell sold his Kiel-based company in 1981 to German industrial giant Siemens. It was later merged with Linotype AG to become Linotype-Hell AG, which in turn was taken over by German printing press maker Heidelberger Druckmaschinen in 1996.

The West German government awarded him its highest honor, the Grand Cross of Merit for Distinguished Service.

Jim Hinga

MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) _ Jim Hinga, former Ball State basketball coach and Heartland Collegiate Conference commissioner, died Monday. He was 78.

Hinga coached the Cardinals from 1954-1968 and compiled a 154-169 career mark, still a school record for victories. He also was an assistant football and track coach and Ball State’s manager of physical education and athletic facilities and services from 1969-81.

He was commissioner of the former Indiana Collegiate Conference from 1970-78, when it became the Heartland Conference, and continued as commissioner until 1984.

Hinga, who previously coached basketball, football and track at West Lafayette and Fort Wayne North high schools, was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 1983.

Jean-Paul Riopelle

MONTREAL (AP) _ Jean-Paul Riopelle, an abstract expressionist painter and sculptor who was the first Canadian to have a painting sell for more than $1 million, died on Tuesday. He was 78.

Riopelle died at his home on Ile-aux-Grues, and island on the St. Lawrence River east of Quebec City, said Robert Tourigny, a nurse who cared for the painter.

Riopelle spent most of his adult years in France, building an international reputation in the 1950s and mingling with the intellectual celebrities of the era.

He was a member of the informal group of expatriate artists known as the Ecole de Paris (School of Paris), which also included Marc Chagall, according to the Artcyclopedia Web site.

Riopelle’s works were exhibited around the world. In 1989, one of his paintings sold for $1.4 million at a New York auction. It was the most ever paid for a Canadian painting at the time and the first to exceed $1 million, according to media reports.

Elaine Crispen Sawyer

WASHINGTON (AP) _ Elaine Crispen Sawyer, Nancy Reagan’s trusted press secretary who played a crucial role in crafting the former first lady’s public image as an anti-drug crusader and a breast cancer survivor, died of pancreatic cancer Tuesday. She was 62.

Sawyer, who had worked for Ronald Reagan when he was governor of California in the 1970s, saw her job with Nancy Reagan as part spokeswoman, part image-maker.

Sawyer deeply believed in the ``Just Say No″ national campaign against drugs and helped arrange Reagan’s appearances at televised basketball games and on an episode of ``Diff’rent Strokes.″

Sawyer also crafted the White House’s responses to criticism over the possibility that the president was basing policy decisions on astrology. In an interview with The Washington Post, Sawyer characterized the turn to astrology as a reaction to an assassination attempt on the president.

Sawyer, a native of Southfield, Mich., attended the University of California at Los Angeles. She worked as a marketing specialist at a Los Angeles real estate company and then became an executive assistant to Reagan communications adviser Michael Deaver in 1975.

Donald Tuomi

ARLINGTON HEIGHTS, Ill. (AP) _ Donald Tuomi, a scientist who helped build the atomic bomb, died Tuesday. He was 81.

Tuomi was a member of the Manhattan Project _ the top-secret U.S. effort during World War II to develop an atomic bomb.

He received the Chicago Technical Societies Award of Merit in 1973 for outstanding technical achievements, service to science, his fellow scientists and to the community.

He retired in 1983 from the Roy C. Ingersoll Research Center of Borg-Warner Corp.

Thomas Winship

BOSTON (AP) _ Thomas Winship, who as editor of The Boston Globe led the paper to 12 Pulitzer Prizes during two decades, died Thursday. He was 81.

Winship was editor from 1965 to 1984, including the turbulent years of Boston’s desegregation and busing crisis. The paper won the Pulitzer for public service in 1975 for its coverage of the crisis.

Winship began his journalism career at The Washington Post in 1945, serving as a political and city reporter. He served briefly as press secretary to Sen. Leverett Saltonstall, R.-Mass.

In 1956 he joined the Globe, where his father, Laurence Winship, was editor. Taking over in 1965, his first steps included removing ads from page one, and he quickly built a reputation for hiring aggressive, young reporters.

Winship directed the editorial coverage until 1981, when the news and editorial operations were split.

Winship also served as a director of the African-American Institute and the Committee to Protect Journalists, and as an advisory board member for the Freedom Forum’s Newseum.

In addition to his wife, Elizabeth, retired writer of the syndicated advice column ``Ask Beth,″ survivors include two sons, two daughters and a sister.

Henry Woods

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) _ Longtime federal judge Henry Woods, who presided over the long-running Little Rock school desegregation battle and was bounced from a Whitewater case because he was a friend of Bill Clinton, died Thursday. He was 83.

Before President Carter appointed him as a U.S. District Court judge for eastern Arkansas in 1979, Woods was an FBI agent, a gubernatorial aide and an honored trial lawyer. He was sworn in as federal judge March 14, 1980.

In 1996, an appeals court panel removed Woods from a Whitewater case against Gov. Jim Guy Tucker. Media reports had said Tucker and Clinton attended the same political fundraiser and Whitewater prosecutor Kenneth W. Starr suggested Woods might have a conflict of interest because of his relationship to Clinton.

One of Woods’ best-known cases involved the Little Rock School District’s 1982 lawsuit against the state and neighboring districts over the desegregation of the Little Rock district.

Woods issued more than 170 orders in the case before handing the lawsuit to another judge in 1990.

In 1957, Woods opposed Gov. Orval Faubus’ use of National Guard troops to prevent nine back school children from attending all-white Central High School, and later supported three attempts to defeat Faubus’ re-election bids.

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