Whitman College offers its condolences to the family and friends of our departed Whitties. Obituary information can be submitted to:

Email: alumni@whitman.edu
Mail: Whitman College, Office of Alumni Relations, 345 Boyer Ave., Walla Walla, WA 99362
Online: whitman.edu/classnotes

*Abbreviated obituaries are run in the magazine.

1930s


Mary Ainslie Hoesly ’34, Oct. 26, 2018, in Spokane, Washington. She attended the University of Washington in Seattle, then worked for the U.S. government in an administrative position in Washington, D.C. Hoesly returned to Spokane and worked for Pacific Northwest Bell. In 1940, she married Wendell Hoesly, and they were married for 29 years until his death in 1969. Hoesly was a member of Kappa Kappa Gamma, the Eastern Star, Women’s College Association, and a volunteer for the American Red Cross. She is survived by two children. She was preceded in death by a cousin, John Ainslie ’46.

1940s


Roberta Fleming Miller ’40, Sept. 2, 2018, in Walla Walla. She married Halford Miller in 1942, and they raised a son and two daughters. They were married for 50 years.

Frances Rosenzweig Ross ’41, Aug. 17, 2018, in Chandler, Arizona. She attended Central Washington College of Education in Ellensburg, taught elementary school, and served as a school librarian for more than 40 years. She married Frank Ross, an elementary school principal, in 1960. Survivors include a son and a nephew, George Pollock, Jr. ’64.

Martha Edmonds Fairbank ’42, Sept. 27, 2018, in Durham, North Carolina. She finished her degree at the University of Washington, then married Henry Fairbank ’40 in 1943. The couple started their family in Los Alamos, New Mexico, while he worked on the Manhattan Project. They settled in Durham, North Carolina, where her husband was on the physics faculty at Duke University. Fairbank served as choir director and organist of her church and was named Minister of Music. Although she only attended Whitman for two years, Fairbank was a dedicated volunteer, serving as class representative for the Office of Annual Giving, and the couple regularly came back to campus for Senior Alumni College. She received the Gordon Scribner Award for Distinguished Service in 2001. She was preceded in death by her husband of 67 years. She is survived by four children.

Sara Baker Schwager ’43, Jan. 7, 2019, in Akron, Ohio. She married William Schwager ’44 in 1943 and settled in Long Beach, California. The family moved to Akron when her husband accepted a position at the Firestone Tire and Rubber Company. Schwager was active in her church and the Delta Gamma sorority. She was a loyal donor to Whitman during her lifetime, giving yearly for more than 50 years and supporting the Annual Fund, Penrose Library and projects named for members of the Baker Family, including the Baker Ferguson Fitness Center and the D.F. Baker Endowment. Schwager was preceded in death by her husband; a sister, Ruth Baker Kimball ’31; a brother, Charles Baker ’29; a cousin, Elizabeth Kennedy McFarland ’45; and a nephew, Frank Kimball ’56. Survivors include two daughters, a son, and a niece, Susan Baker ’63.

Sturgis Bodine ’44, Feb. 5, 2018, in Federal Way, Washington.

Betty Price Liekhus ’45, Aug. 12, 2017, in Sammamish, Washington. She married Eugene Liekhus in 1948, and they raised two sons and a daughter.

Carolee Brown Twining ’45, Dec. 29, 2017, in Carmichael, California. After finishing her undergraduate degree at Pomona College in Claremont, California, she earned her teaching certification at the University of California, Los Angeles, and taught school for 15 years. Twining earned a master’s degree at the University of Southern California and worked part time as a therapist for children with learning problems. She tutored students at home until her retirement. She was preceded in death by her husband. Survivors include a son and a daughter.

Robert “Bud” Elkins ’46, Sept. 25, 2018, in Long Beach, California. He was part of the U.S. Naval V-12 training program at Whitman for one year. He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II, in Korea and Vietnam, retiring in 1971 with the rank of commander. His second career brought him to St. Anthony’s High School in Long Beach as chief business administrator; he retired at age 70. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Dorothy. Survivors include wife Elise and two children.

Jean Schumacher McClelland ’47, Dec. 11, 2018, in Seattle. She finished her degree at the University of Washington and moved to Ketchikan, Alaska, to teach piano. She married Charles McClelland, a pilot, and his career took them around the world, including Bangkok, Thailand; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Lima, Peru. When they returned to the United States, McClelland earned her master’s in music at UW, then joined the staff, working some of that time for then-President Charles Odegaard. Wherever the family traveled, McClelland played piano. She was preceded in death by her husband. She is survived by her children, including Scott McClelland ’85.

Emily Stanton Schue ’47, Sept. 15, 2018, in Salem, Oregon. She taught English in a small town on the Oregon Coast and married Warren Schue in 1948. They lived most of their married life in Eugene, Oregon. Schue served three terms on the Eugene City Council, participated in the League of Women Voters and helped raise funds for new library development. The couple served on committees to help low-income families with housing issues in Eugene and nearby Springfield. She spent her final years in Salem. She was preceded in death by her husband. Survivors include her four children.

Maynard Cutler ’48, Dec. 3, 2018, in Spokane, Washington. He met his wife Mary Peringer ’48 at Whitman. He earned a master’s degree in physics from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, then returned to Orchard Prairie near Spokane to farm with his father. The Cutlers raised six children and eventually moved near Nine Mile Falls, where he developed a successful wheat and bluegrass seed farm. He also helped develop a residential neighborhood along the Spokane River. He was preceded in death by his wife of 67 years and a brother, Royal ’41. Survivors include his six children: Maynard Jr., Dan ’73, Kit ’74, Robert, Judy Cutler Milliette and Katie Cutler Talbott ’88.

Donnabelle Mahan Aiton ’49, Oct. 26, 2018, in Tulalip, Washington. She studied at Washington State University and the University of Puget Sound. She married Clinton Aiton ’47 in 1948, and they raised four children. Aiton was a homemaker and worked as a secretary in support of her husband’s ministry. She was preceded in death by her husband. Her brother, Loyd Mahan ’51, passed soon after her death. Survivors include four children, two sisters and a sister-in-law, Virginia Herring Mahan ’55.

1950s


Calvin Boyes ’51, Nov. 13, 2018, in Sacramento, California. Following graduation, he married Eileen Golden ’52. Boyes served in the U.S. Coast Guard and Coast Guard Reserve, retiring with the rank of commander in 1977. In 1956, he started as an assistant baseball and football coach at Sacramento State University. Boyes served many roles at the school: head baseball coach for 17 years, backfield football coach, professor and physical education department chair, director of university development, vice president and athletic director. A three-sport athlete, he was inducted into the Whitman Hall of Fame in 2006. Survivors include his wife, two daughters and a son.

Marilyn Griffin Gunning ’51, Nov. 7, 2018, in Bellingham, Washington. She married John Gunning ’52 in 1951, and they raised three children. A passion for antiques led her to the Whatcom Museum, where Gunning volunteered for museum docent field trips and tours of the region and fought to save the Old City Hall from demolition. She was preceded in death by her husband and daughter. She is survived by two sons.

Loyd Mahan ’51, Dec. 16, 2018, in Walla Walla. Following graduation, he was drafted into the U.S. Army and served in Korea. Mahan returned to Walla Walla and joined the family fuel business. He married Virginia Herring ’55 in 1957, and they had three children. Mahan was a member of several service clubs, including the Exchange Club. He was instrumental in the selection of the Alumni House on Marcus Street and would often stop by to be sure it was being well maintained. Mahan served as co-chair of his 20th and 40th class reunions and served on the alumni board from 1980 to 1986. In 1993, Mahan received the Gordon Scribner Award for Distinguished Service. He was preceded in death by a sister, Donnabelle Mahan Aiton ’49. He is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter.

William McKay ’51, Aug. 27, 2018, in Los Altos, California. He worked most of his career at Lockheed Missiles and Space Company, where he met his wife of 59 years, Joan Kaar. A varsity tennis student-athlete, McKay played competitive league tennis for most of his life. Survivors include his wife and three children.

Mary Newton Norseth ’51, Sept. 16, 2018, in Portland, Oregon. She met Palmer Norseth ’51 while taking prerequisites for nursing school, and they maintained their relationship once she transferred to the University of Oregon. The couple married in 1952, settled in Portland and raised three children. Norseth worked as a newborn nursery registered nurse at Oregon Health and Science University, and Providence St. Vincent Medical Center. Survivors include her husband, a daughter and two sons.

David Beale ’52, Sept. 9, 2018, in Topeka, Kansas. He earned his doctorate at the University of Washington Medical School and became interested in the treatment of inmates. Beale served in the U.S. Army and worked with inmates at Spandau Prison in Germany. He came to Topeka and worked at the Kansas State Reception and Diagnostic Center for Prisoners. He attended the Menninger School of Psychiatry and the Topeka Institute for Psychoanalysis. Beale married Estela Martin in 1964; they had two children and divorced in 1974. He worked at the Menninger School until his retirement in 1996, then traveled and filled in for physicians around the country. Survivors include his son and daughter.

Richard “Dick” Morrison ’52, Dec. 28, 2018, in Dallas, Texas. He had a long career in industrial sales. Survivors include wife Nancy and three children.

Charles Simon ’52, Nov. 8, 2018, in Walla Walla. Before Whitman, he enlisted in the U.S. Army Air Corps and trained as a cryptographer. Part of his training took place at the airbase in Walla Walla, where he met and married Evelyn Archer. Simon served in China and Southeast Asia. The couple eventually settled in Walla Walla and purchased Tommy’s Dutch Lunch, later operating Tommy’s at the Airport. He was active with the local Republican Party and served a term as a county commissioner. Simon was preceded in death by his wife and daughter.

E. Joan “Joanie” Miller Stevens ’52, Nov. 9, 2018, in Walla Walla. She married Robert “Spud” Stevens ’50 in 1952, and they raised three children in Walla Walla. Stevens taught elementary school, retiring as a fourth-grade teacher from Prospect Point Elementary School. Her passion was theater and she performed in numerous productions at the outdoor amphitheater, the Little Theatre of Walla Walla, and for the Sweet Adelines. She was preceded in death by her husband. Survivors include a son, two daughters, including Leslie Stevens Phillips ’79, and six grandchildren, including Hunter Benedict ’06.

James Updegraff ’52, Sept. 21, 2018, in Sacramento, California. Updegraff served in the U.S. Army in Korea, then finished his undergraduate degree at the University of California, Berkeley. He earned a Master of Business Administration and a Master of Public Administration from Golden Gate University in San Francisco. Updegraff had a long career in banking, including a term as deputy superintendent of banks for the state. After the death of his first wife, Helyn, he married Kristin Towe Hartley. Survivors include his wife and six children.

Denis Knowles ’53, Nov. 24, 2018, in Prescott, Arizona. He earned his Master of Business Administration from Harvard, then served in the U.S. Army at the Presidio in San Francisco. Upon discharge, Knowles worked for Del Monte Corporation/RJR Nabisco. He retired in 1987 as vice president of business planning and development. Early in retirement, Knowles traveled with his wife Virginia, until her passing in 2010. He tutored for an English as a second language class and was active in his church. Survivors include two children and his companion, Isabel Benell.

Richard “Dick” Neher ’53, Nov. 28, 2018, in Walla Walla. He earned his master’s degree in education, then spent two years in the U.S. Army. Neher returned to Walla Walla, spending 34 years in secondary education as a teacher, coach and administrator. He was the principal of Walla Walla High School, his alma mater, for 20 years and was named “Outstanding Educator” and “Secondary Principal of the Year,” among other accolades. He served on countless boards and associations for secondary education and the greater Walla Walla community. After retiring in 1990, Neher spent two years in Olympia as state representative from the 16th Legislative District. He was married for 56 years to Marilyn Love. Neher served Whitman as co-chair of the 15th, 25th and 65th reunions of his class. He received the Gordon Scribner Award for Distinguished Service in 2018. Survivors include his two sons.

Barbara House Lienhard ’55, Aug. 3, 2018, in Reno, Nevada. On graduation day, she married Fredric Lienhard ’55. After his military service in Fort Knox, Kentucky, the couple settled in Reno, Nevada. Lienhard worked as a teacher’s assistant, retiring in 1998 from Washoe County School District. Physically active, she swam more than 4,400 miles over the years and won many race-walking competitions. Lienhard sang with the Sierra Nevada MasterWorks Chorale for nearly 35 years. Survivors include her husband, a son, a daughter and her sister, Marilyn House Pewitt ’56.

Dawn Lawrence Kindred ’59, June 4, 2017, in Bremerton, Washington. She was married to Jack Kindred ’57 until his passing in 2008. Survivors include four children.

1960s


C. Holden Brink ’60, Sept. 5, 2018, in Orangevale, California. He earned advanced degrees in fish, game and wildlife management, including a master’s degree from the University of Alaska Anchorage and a doctorate from Utah State University in Logan, Utah. Brink had a long career with the Bureau of Land Management, the highlight of which was as preserve manager at the Cosumnes River Preserve in Sacramento County, California. Survivors include his wife of 50 years, Launna Christensen, and their four children.

Jarrell Landau ’60, March 26, 2017, in Longview, Washington. He completed his undergraduate degree at Portland State University, then worked for Longview Fibre Company as a shift chemist, stock foreman and eventually retired from the sales department. Landau married Joan Bickel ’59 in 1961 and they raised two children. He was involved in Boy Scouts, the Masonic and Elks lodges, and the Longview Community Church. Survivors include his wife, a son, a daughter and four grandsons, including Tyler ’19.

William Hartwell III ’61, Dec. 15, 2018, in Lubbock, Texas. He earned a Master of Music in voice and pedagogy from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. He was an instructor, director or assistant professor of music at institutions in Eastern Washington, Indiana and Michigan before settling in Lubbock as associate professor of music at Texas Tech University. Hartwell taught from 1973 to 2004, receiving emeritus status in 2005. Hartwell is survived by his wife of 36 years, Janis Quier Hartwell, her three sons, and two children from a previous marriage.

Carol Markewitz ’61, Nov. 14, 2018, in Portland, Oregon. She earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of Oregon in Eugene. Markewitz was a high school English teacher, an executive secretary to the president of U.S. Bank in Portland, and a technical and human resources policy writer. She actively supported animal protection, the environment, humanitarian causes and social justice organizations. Survivors include her brother, Milton Markewitz ’62; cousins; nieces and nephews, including John Markewitz ’93.

Bertha “Bebe” Thompson ’62, April 8, 2018, in Ephrata, Washington. Thompson earned a doctorate in mathematics from the University of Washington and taught at the University of Seattle for seven years. She earned her CPA certification and returned to her hometown of Ephrata to care for family. Thompson worked for the accounting firm Sutter, Kunkle & Thompson in Ephrata and Moses Lake, Washington.

Barbara Babler Wood ’63, Oct. 31, 2018, in Boise, Idaho. She married David Wood ’62 and they lived in Green Bay, Wisconsin, for 36 years. The couple moved to Boise in 2005 to be closer to their two daughters. Wood was at home with their children until 1982, when she joined her husband at his advertising agency, where she worked as bookkeeper and manager. In retirement, she enjoyed quilting and gardening. Survivors include her husband and daughters.

Stephen Ronfeldt ’64, Dec. 1, 2018, in Berkeley, California. He married Suzanne “Suzy” Muldown ’64, and they raised three children. After earning his law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, Ronfeldt received a poverty law fellowship, which allowed him to combine law and social justice. He eventually established a nonprofit to continue representing the poor after federal funding was cut. Ronfeldt received the Alumnus of Merit Award in 1996. A tennis standout as a student, he was inducted into the Whitman Athletics Hall of Fame in 2004, and was still playing competitively, nationally ranked just a year ago. Survivors include his wife, two daughters and a son.

Robert “Bob” Tenold ’64, Dec. 15, 2018, in Spokane, Washington. Tenold left Whitman and earned his bachelor’s degree in metallurgical engineering. Following a short stint at The Boeing Company in Seattle, he returned to his hometown to work for the family business, Spokane Industries. Tenold served on several local boards and was involved in the Rotary Club of Spokane, and played saxophone and clarinet. Survivors include his wife Debbie; two daughters from a previous marriage; brothers John ’68 and Greg ’70; and sister-in-law Janet Dvorak Tenold ’70.

Mary Jo Jepsen Toivola ’64, Oct. 29, 2018, in Lacey, Washington. She married Pertti Toivo Kalevi Toivola in 1973. Toivola worked as a medical technologist, most recently at the University of Washington Medical Center. Survivors include her husband and a niece, Kara Jepsen Gladstone ’97.

Dean Lambe ’65, Sept. 14, 2018, in Teaneck, New Jersey. Lambe earned his doctorate in biopsychology from Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. After teaching psychology at Marietta College in Marietta, Ohio, he began a long career in the pharmaceutical industry. Lambe was also a writer, published in scientific journals and magazines as well as fiction magazines and books. He married Julie Gaisford ’65 in 1966 and they later divorced. He married Laurie Haldeman in 1997. Lambe served as class representative for the Office of Annual Giving and as co-chair of his 15th reunion. He is survived by his wife and extended family.

Susan Hill Kasson ’67, March 7, 2018, in Portland, Oregon. She married David Bottemiller and they later divorced. She married Richard Kasson in 1976 and they had a daughter. The family lived in Tigard and Pendleton, Oregon, and Kasson balanced motherhood, caring for ageing parents, part-time employment and volunteer work. In 1990, she became the office manager for her husband’s law firm, Kasson & Associates. They worked together until retirement in 2011. She assisted with her daughter and son-in-law’s bakery, Waves of Grain, in Cannon Beach, Oregon. She was an associate class representative for the Office of Annual Giving for 10 years and served on the Alumni Association Board. She was preceded in death by her husband. Survivors include her daughter and a brother, Tim Hill ’69.

1970s


Judy Bordeaux ’70, Nov. 19, 2018, in Carnation, Washington. Bordeaux earned her teaching certificate at the University of Washington in Seattle and worked for Bellevue Public Schools for many years as a teacher, librarian and curriculum developer. She married Robert Spayde, they had two children and and later divorced. Survivors include her daughter and son.

Cathy Powers Strombom ‘72, Dec. 1, 2018, in Seattle. She met David Strombom ’72 at Whitman and they married following graduation. The couple had multiple work and travel assignments overseas including Morocco, Iran, India, Turkey and Pakistan. Strombom worked 34 years with the Seattle office of Parsons Brinckerhoff as a vice president and head of the planning team that did early work on major transportation structures and systems on the West Coast and in Hawaii. Survivors include her husband, her son and a brother-in-law, Doug Strombom ’80.

Christine Jacobi McDade ’74, Sept. 18, 2018, in Seattle. She married Sandy McDade ’74 after graduation and earned her master’s degree in special education from the University of Washington. McDade spent her career teaching in the Issaquah School District, most recently at Liberty High School. She was a volunteer for the offices of Annual Giving and Alumni Relations. The McDades traveled with Whitman’s Alumni Association. Survivors include her husband, two daughters and a brother, Michael Jacobi ’78.

Ramona Ralston ’77, June 11, 2018, in Madrid, New York. She earned her doctorate in English literature from the University of Southern California in Los Angeles. Ralston married Sidney Sondergard in 1986 and the couple moved to Canton, New York, where she taught at the State University of New York (SUNY) at the Canon and Potsdam campuses. She later worked in administration at SUNY Potsdam, retiring after 28 years. Survivors include her husband.

William Wallace ’78, Nov. 9, 2018, in Alexandria, Virginia. He joined the Peace Corps after graduation and was stationed for four years in Cameroon, Africa, teaching English. His passion for Cameroon and its people lasted the rest of his life. Wallace worked the remainder of his career as an information technology specialist at the Pentagon. His late grandfather, an Episcopal bishop, performed a partnership ceremony in 1989 for Wallace and his longtime partner, Tom Suydam. Survivors include his partner; brother Richard Wallace ’74; sister-in-law Janet White Wallace ’74; niece Erin Wallace ’03; sister Jenny Wallace ’73; and brother-in-law Blake Nakanishi ’72.

1980s


David Welts ’87, Oct. 27, 2018, in San Diego, California.

1990s


Jack Young ’96, July 30, 2018, in Yakima, Washington.

2000s


Cheryl Kinne Bench ’02, May 29, 2018, in Santa Barbara, California. She married Billy Bench and they later divorced. The couple moved from Southern California to Pendleton, Oregon, where she commuted to Walla Walla to attend Whitman, and later, to College Place, where she earned her master’s degree in social work. The family settled in Santa Barbara, and Bench worked in hospice care. She earned her doctorate from Pacifica Graduate Institute in Carpinteria, California. Survivors include her son, David.

Cory Franklin ‘02, Oct. 14, 2018, in Snoqualmie, Washington.

Remembering Whitman Leaders


Phelps Gose '58Phelps Gose ’58, Nov. 12, 2018, in Kihei on Maui, Hawaii. He served in the U.S. Navy from 1951 to 1954 as a petty officer third class. He returned to Walla Walla and attended Whitman. Gose married Mary-Jean Woolsey-Lee ’56 in 1956. In 1962, he earned his law degree from Gonzaga University School of Law in Spokane and began his legal career as a deputy prosecuting attorney in Spokane County. In 1965, Gose returned to Walla Walla to practice law with his father. He also served as a Superior Court judge in Walla Walla County and helped establish a statewide legal aid office in Washington. In 1991, he worked to set up the Federal Defenders of Eastern Washington and Idaho, a public defender’s office. Gose served on the Board of Overseers from 1971 to 1986, when he was named Overseer Emeritus. His great uncle was Christopher Columbus Gose, a member of the first graduating class of Whitman. On his mother’s side, his great grandfather was Levi Ankeny, after whom Ankeny Field is named. Survivors include his wife of 62 years and his four children: Mary Beth, Tom, Jane and George ’86.Donations in his memory may be made to Whitman College, 345 Boyer Ave., Walla Walla, WA 99362.