In Memoriam
John O’Connor
Puget Sound
band director from 1946 to
passed away on May
He was 96. John was born
in Milwaukee, Wis., but grew
up in California’s east Bay
Area and enjoyed Boy Scouts
in his youth. He learned to
play trumpet at age 10, which
tinued to travel and built a log
cabin vacation home in Door
County, Wis. They were active
in the Wesley United Method-
ist Church in Urbana. A few
years after Erma Jean’s death in
John married a former
student, Anna Kinrod Watts
The two divided their time
between her home in Oakland,
Calif., and his home in Cham-
paign. When Anna passed
away in 2011, John moved to
Seattle and continued to play
his trumpet. Survivors are six
children, nine grandchildren,
and four great-grandchildren.
The family set up a memo-
rial website for John at www.
M. George Brockway
died at the age of 98 on Oct.
11, 2012.
He was born in
Pueblo, Colo., and moved with
his family to Olympia, Wash.,
in 1929. George graduated
from Olympia High School
in 1932, attended Pacific
Lutheran University briefly,
and graduated from Puget
Sound. He began his 40-year
career in education in the
Shelton schools, then taught
and coached in the Olympia
School District for 33 years,
retiring in 1976 as director and
vice principal at then-Jefferson
Junior High School in Olympia.
In retirement George worked
for two years as a carrier for
The Olympian
and part time
with the Employment Security
Department for Washington
state. He was a member of the
Olympia Elks Lodge No. 186,
Y’s Men, and the Washington
Education Association. George
received a life membership
from the Washington State
PTA for excellence in educa-
tion. His first wife preceded
rected by
Marilyn Bennett
UPS visiting assistant professor
of theatre arts. You might also
remember Andrew from the
cover of the 125th Anniversary
edition of
He gave an
outstanding performance as a
s college man, sporting
a letterman’s sweater. Thanks
again, Andrew!
The Classmates editor
is Cathy Tollefson ’83,
P’17. You can call her at
or email
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To send Classmates entries
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or email Classmates Editor Cathy
Tollefson ’83 at
Arches, University of Puget Sound,
Office of Communications, 1500 N.
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When submitting a change of address,
please include your old address.
A note on names and abbreviations
Undergraduate class years appear as numer-
als preceded by an apostrophe (e.g., ’73). For
graduate degrees, “M.S.” = master of science
degree; “M.B.A.” = master of business admin-
istration; “M.A.T.” = master of arts in teaching;
M.Ed.” = master of education; “M.P.A.” = mas-
ter of public administration; “M.M.” = master
of music; “D.P.T.” = doctor of physical therapy;
J.D.” = doctor of law. “P” = parent. “GP” =
grandparent. “Hon.” = honorary degree.
About classmates
Flying Cross in 1944. After
the war John and his family
moved to Urbana, Ill., where
he earned a master’s degree
in music education and was
president of the concert band
before being selected as direc-
tor of bands at CPS. John was
called back to active duty dur-
ing the Korean War, serving as
a communications and air traf-
fic control officer. He remained
in the Air Force and retired in
then became an associ-
ate professor of music at the
University of Illinois at Urbana-
Champaign. John was academ-
ic coordinator of instruction for
the Illinois Summer Youth Mu-
sic program, taught university-
sponsored courses throughout
the state, and played in many
groups, including the Cham-
paign-Urbana Symphony. He
retired from the university in
He and Erma Jean con-
Trustee Emeritus
Booth Gardner Hon.’87
died at his Ta-
coma home, from complications of Parkinson’s disease, on
March 15. He was 76. Booth was a longtime friend and sup-
porter of the college. He led the School of Business and Eco-
nomics from 1967 to 1972 and served as a trustee from 1976
to 1994. Booth was a two-term governor of Washington state
and championed education reform, health services, social
justice initiatives, and the state’s Growth Management Act.
Prior to his tenure in Olympia, Booth was a state senator and
a Pierce County executive. His public service concluded with
his appointment by President Bill Clinton as the chief U.S.
trade ambassador to the World Trade Organization in Geneva.
In recent years Booth campaigned for a “Death with Dignity”
law. The law, which allows terminally ill adults with six months
or less to live to request a legal lethal dose of medication from
their doctors, took effect in Washington state in March 2009.
A documentary titled
The Last Campaign of Booth Gardner
nominated for an Academy Award in 2010. In the same year,
John Hughes ’64, chief historian for the secretary of state’s
Legacy Project, authored the governor’s biography,
The title was taken from
a campaign slogan used during
Booth’s first run for governor.
Booth was born in Tacoma. His parents divorced when he
was 4 years old, and his mother later married Norton Clapp,
former chair of the Laird Norton Company and president and
chair of the Weyerhaeuser Company. Norton Clapp served the
University of Puget Sound as a trustee for 62 years, including
years as chair of the board. Booth’s mother and younger
sister were killed in a plane crash in 1951, and in 1966 his
father fell to his death from a hotel room balcony in Honolulu.
Norton Clapp remained active in Booth’s life, and although
he was a Republican, made significant donations to Booth’s
gubernatorial runs. Survivors are Booth’s son, Doug; his
daughter, Gail; and eight grandchildren. A public memorial
for Gov. Gardner was held on campus March 30 in Memorial
would shape the rest of his life.
His family returned to Milwau-
kee, where John completed
high school. He then attended
the University of Wisconsin-
Milwaukee, earning his tuition
by playing his horn at various
venues in town. He met his
future wife, Erma Jean Huhn, in
a poetry class at UWM. Out of
college, John directed elemen-
tary school bands in Shreve-
port, La., and was a founding
member of the Shreveport
Symphony. In 1941 he joined
the Army Air Force, attended
flight school, and was commis-
sioned as a second lieutenant.
He married Erma Jean in 1942.
John served in World War II
flying anti-submarine patrols
in the Gulf of Mexico, and he
later flew a B-24 bomber in
Italy as part of the Fifteenth Air
Force. He flew 50 missions and
was awarded the Distinguished