In Memoriam


Bill Colby, courtesy of the Colby familyBill Colby, a prolific painter and printmaker, as well as an admired teacher and professor emeritus of art, taught printmaking and art history at Puget Sound for more than 30 years. During his tenure, he created and exhibited art  inspired by nature. His work “captured the expressive moods and nuance of the natural world,” according to ArtsWA. “Many of his prints feature variations of repeated imagery, capturing the sense of changing light and season.” Born in Kansas to a family of 11 siblings, Bill showed an early interest in and talent for drawing. After high school, he served in Germany during World War II and returned home with a passion for art. He earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Denver and a master’s degree from the University of Illinois. He taught at multiple public schools in Portland, Ore., from 1950 until 1955, when he married Trudi Bednorz and accepted a professorship at Puget Sound. There, he chaired the art department, served as director of Kittredge Gallery, led several study abroad programs, and contributed to the Asian Studies Program. He and his wife had four daughters, who, family say, influenced Bill’s “creative flow.” They traveled regularly as a family to study art history in Europe. Colby’s paintings and woodblock prints can be found in embassies overseas; collections in Washington, D.C.; schools; art museums; corporations; libraries; and private homes. Washington’s State Art Collection features more than 20 of his prints and paintings. He died suddenly on April 19 at the age of 92. A memorial service was held on campus on May 5.

J. Timothy Hansen, by Ross MulhausenThe son of two teachers, Idaho native J. Timothy Hansen felt called to academics after a year at California’s Pasadena City College. He moved north and earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Whitman College, where he met and married Sharon McGee. He went on to earn a master’s degree in the same subject from the University of Washington and a Ph.D. from the University of Oregon. After receiving his doctorate in 1965, he moved with his wife and young son to Minnesota, where he landed his first teaching job and welcomed another son. In 1968, he joined Puget Sound as an associate professor of English and ethnic studies. He was a Fulbright Hays Senior Lecturer at  National University, Tehran, Iran, in 1976–77, and a Fulbright Lecturer at Madras and Visva-Bharati universities in India in 1991. He was also a dedicated member of the faculty, and served on several university task forces and on the Faculty Senate. Provost Kristine Bartanen says J. Timothy was “a colleague who strived to be involved in projects where he could be most useful. His focus was on his students, and he was an enthusiastic presence in and out of the classroom.” Current faculty members say he was crucial in transforming the curriculum of the department and the university. The professor emeritus died in the spring. 

After more than 30 years of teaching geology and oceanography in Los Angeles, Altus Simpson and his wife, Lu Lawrence, retired early and settled on Bainbridge Island, Wash. He and his wife joined Puget Sound as adjunct professors and taught for 10 years between giving lectures on cruise ships to Alaska and gardening around their Bainbridge Island home. They both eventually retired “for good,” sailing on every ocean and visiting more than 100 countries, on every continent. Altus was always a traveler. Born in a small town in central Oklahoma, he moved to San Diego after graduating high school and immediately joined the U.S. Navy. He was assigned to duty on a  destroyer and island-hopped as troops moved into Japan during World War II. After completing his service, he earned degrees in geology and oceanography from the University of Southern California and was employed by a major petroleum service company before taking up teaching. Altus died in Seattle on March 30 at the age of 95.


Don Duncan, from Puget Sound ArchivesThe countless swimmers coached by Don Duncan during his nearly four decades as head coach were more than Hall of Fame athletes; they were his family. So much so that he became known as D.A.D. and “the beloved  grandfather of UPS Swimming.” Born in Hoquiam, Wash., Don graduated from Washington State University and joined the U.S. Air Force, serving as a first lieutenant for six years. Then, in 1956, he was hired as a pool manager and swimming instructor at Puget Sound—a position he called his “dream job,” according to his obituary in The Daily World. After one year, he became head swim coach. In the 38 years that followed, he poured his heart and soul into his career. He saw the university compete in two different conferences—the NCAA D-II and NAIA— and coached 23 individual national champions and 84 All-Americans. He was the NAIA National Coach of the Year in 1988 and 1993, and was inducted into the NAIA Hall of Fame in 1991. As an NCAA D-II coach during Puget Sound’s green-and-gold era, he led the Logger men to top-10 national rankings 13 times. Twelve of his former swimmers are in the Puget Sound Athletics Hall of Fame, and he was inducted in 1996, two years after retiring. And while the talent he drew from his swimmers was impressive, Richard Ulrich, Puget Sound’s director of athletics from 1983 to 2003, remembers him most fondly for his gentle and caring nature. “Don was one of those unique individuals who you never heard a negative thing about him, and in turn, he never spoke of others in a demeaning manner,” Richard said in a Puget Sound Athletics statement. “I can honestly say he is one of the finest men I have had the privilege to know.” His influence is still felt in the Logger swimming program today, current head swim coach Chris Myhre said. “I will be forever indebted to Don for his personal and professional support,” he said. “I am grateful for his  mentoring and friendship, and for being such an amazing human being.” Don died on May 31 at the age of 89. A memorial was held in Tacoma on June 14.


James Petrich ‘39, a designer, naval architect, engineer, artist, accomplished historian, U.S. Navy veteran, student of the universe, and devout Catholic, died on Sept. 19. He was 91. A Tacoma native, James attended high schools in San Diego, Calif., and Tacoma before becoming a Logger. He attended Puget Sound and began working with his father at Puget Sound Boatbuilding. He served in the Pacific during World War II, started his own business in 1954, traveled, and enjoyed spending time with his family.

Marion Clendenen Davis ‘45 passed away in Montana on Aug. 3, 2018. She was 94. Born in Bellingham, Wash., she graduated from Puget Sound with a bachelor’s degree in education. Soon after, she married Leonard Davis after his return from World War II. They settled in Seattle and raised their two children before retiring to 60 acres in Montana.

Catherine Luzzi Gallacher ‘46, P’87 passed away on March 27 at the age of 96. Born and raised in Tacoma, she graduated from Stadium High School and attended Puget Sound, where she met John Gallacher ‘45, P’87, the man who would become her husband of 70 years. The couple moved throughout North America and had three children before settling in Texas, where they lived for 40 years. After John’s death in 2015, Catherine moved to Gig Harbor, Wash.

Jean Marshall Milton ‘50 passed away on Feb. 24 from Alzheimer’s disease. She was 90. Born and raised in Tacoma, she graduated from Lincoln High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Puget Sound, where she joined the Alpha Phi sorority and met her future husband, Richard Milton ‘51. The couple had three daughters, and Jean went on to work as a teacher for nine years and as a nursery school coordinator for 24.

Roy Jacobson ‘51, a Tacoma native who attended Puget Sound, died on March 15. He was 91. While a student at Lincoln High School, he played baseball and worked at the Port of Tacoma shipyards to contribute to the war effort during World War II. After graduating, he joined the wartime U.S. Merchant Marine and served on ammunition ships in the Pacific and Atlantic for two years. After one year at Puget Sound, he went to work for Safeway Grocery for more than 40 years.

Pauline Griffith Lien ‘51 died on Dec. 13 at the age of 91. Born in Portland, Ore., she earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Puget Sound, where she was a member of the Alpha Phi sorority. She also held an Associate of Arts degree from Colorado Women’s College and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Washington State University. She taught first grade in the Olympia School District for 27 years.

Gerry Grebbell Gould ‘52, a native of Seattle, Wash., who attended Puget Sound, died on March 13. She was 88. While a student at Puget Sound, she met and married Charles Gould. A soldier, he was deployed to Korea while Gerry was pregnant with their first child. When Charles was injured and brought to a hospital in Denver, Colo., she packed up and moved, finding a job, apartment, and day care arrangements in 24 hours. The family moved back to Seattle once he had recovered. She earned a bachelor’s degree from Seattle Pacific University and taught in Seattle until retiring in 1983.

June Schaffer Alexander ‘52 passed away on April 20, five weeks after her 89th birthday. Born and raised in Tacoma, she graduated from Stadium High School and attended Puget Sound before taking a job as a receptionist for a dental office at Fort Lewis (now Joint Base Lewis-McChord). She met and married a Navy man, John Alexander, and the couple moved around the country with their three children. Once her children were grown, she took a job with the Drug Enforcement Agency and worked for 40 years before retiring at the age of 88.

Janet Erickson Whitcomb ‘53 passed away in Shoreline, Wash., on Feb. 7. She was 87. A native of Western Washington, Janet graduated from high school in Kent and earned a bachelor’s degree in comparative sociology from Puget Sound, where she was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority and met Paul Whitcomb ‘51. The two married in 1953. They eventually settled in Spokane, Wash., where Janet committed her life to raising their daughters.

Janet Johnston Butorovich ‘54, ‘55 died on July 4, 2018, in an auto accident in Montana. She was 86. Born and raised in Wisconsin, she earned a bachelor’s degree in occupational therapy from Puget Sound, where she was a member of the Chi Omega sorority and was elected ASUPS vice president. She worked as an occupational therapist at the Montana State Hospital and Billings Clinic Psychiatric Center.

Eileen McArthur Fawcett ‘54, a graduate of Tacoma’s Lincoln High School, died on April 27. She was 87. Born in Griggs, Wash., she moved with her family to Tacoma as a middle schooler. She attended Puget Sound, where she joined the Pi Beta Phi sorority and met Ben Fawcett ’52. The two married and raised three children before she began a career as a bookkeeper. She is preceded in death by Ben.

John Ramsey ‘55 died in Tucson, Ariz., on April 19. He held a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Puget Sound and a Ph.D. in biochemistry from Oregon State University. 

Gary Johnson ’56, a native of Wenatchee, Wash., passed away on April 20. He was 85. Gary moved with his family to Tacoma at a young age and went on to graduate from Stadium High School before attending Puget Sound. He left the university to join the U.S. Army, and married Sally Charleson, who preceded him in death. The couple had three daughters, and Gary worked at Smyth Moving and Storage for more than 30 years before retiring.

Jess Sexson ’56 died on March 23 after a sudden illness. He was 84. Born in Oroville, Wash., he grew up in the outdoors and was an Eagle Scout. After graduating from Oroville High School, he attended Puget Sound before transferring to Washington State University. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and worked for Boeing and GTE (Verizon). He retired in 1993 and settled in Spokane, Wash. 

Ronald Mears ‘58 passed away on March 24, six weeks before his 90th birthday. Born and raised in Oklahoma, he moved to Washington after graduating from high school and joined the military. He served in the Korean War and, once returning stateside, earned a bachelor’s degree in geology from Puget Sound. He married Judith Ann Swanson and worked as a manager for Sears and Roebuck for 20 years. In 1973, he left Sears and purchased his first rental equipment firm. He retired from the equipment rental business in 1998.

Roy Stenger ‘58, M.F.A.’64, P’78 died on Dec. 10 in Tacoma, just miles from where he was born. He was 87. Born and raised in Tacoma, he graduated from Lincoln High School and served in the U.S. Navy. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in art from Puget Sound and taught art in the Tacoma school district for more than 20 years. An accomplished artist, he excelled at metal sculpture and displayed his work throughout the country.

Sally Strobel Underwood ‘59, a graduate of Puget Sound’s sociology program, died on May 3, two and a half weeks before her 82nd birthday. She worked as a social worker in California before moving back to Tacoma. Both of Sally’s parents, as well as five of her six sisters, are Puget Sound alumni. 

Donald Eyres ‘60, a lifelong Tacoma resident, died on Dec. 10 at the age of 84. Donald graduated from Lincoln High School and served in the U.S. Navy for four years before earning a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Puget Sound. He began his career in the general contracting business and was the co-owner of Demara Inc. He also worked in sales over the course of his career, particularly enjoying his years with City Sign.

James Murphy ‘60 passed away on March 1 at the age of 80. He attended Puget Sound.

Jerry Thacker ‘61, M.Ed.’70, a native of Ohio, died on Feb. 15 at the age of 81. He earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in education from Puget Sound, where he played on the basketball and football teams.

David Allen ‘62 died on April 6 in Nampa, Idaho. He was 79. A native of Idaho, he grew up on his family’s farm and graduated from Puget Sound with a bachelor’s degree in art and design. While at the university, he met Sara Johnston ’61, and the two married. He moved back to Idaho with her and became a fourth-generation farmer. He and his brother, Glenn, started their own farm in 1964.

Darrel Adams ‘63, a native of Colville, Wash., passed away on May 1. He was 77. After graduating from Washington’s Clarkston High School, he attended Puget Sound, but graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in architecture. Michael Flannery ‘63 passed away on Feb. 25 in Bellingham, Wash., one month before his 80th birthday. Born in Minnesota, Michael moved with his family to Seattle when he was 11 years old. He spent his teenage years working on the family farm in Auburn, Wash., and attended Puget Sound on a football scholarship. He held a variety of jobs throughout his life, including underwater salvaging, gold mining in Alaska, working the Alaska pipeline, commercial fishing in the Puget Sound, owning a car dealership, selling real estate, and building many homes and apartment complexes in the Bellingham area. 

Mary Brown Crago ‘64 died in Yakima, Wash., on Feb. 24. She was 77. Mary earned a bachelor’s degree in home economics from Puget Sound and was a member of the Chi Omega sorority.

Paul Griffin ’64, a longtime resident of Fox Island, Wash., died on Feb. 18. He was 79. A native of Tacoma, he graduated from Stadium High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Puget Sound, where he was a member of the Kappa Sigma fraternity. He was a commercial fisherman, owned a construction company, and worked in banking.

Zelda Mae Lay Scheyer ‘65 passed away on Jan. 20 at the age of 91. Born and raised in Montana, she was a musician who practiced piano and organ. After graduating from Helena High School, she received a music scholarship from Puget Sound and attended for three years before leaving to help with her father’s political  campaign. She married William Scheyer ’50 and had three children. For two years, beginning in 1963, Zelda commuted from Port Townsend to Puget Sound to complete her degree. She taught second grade and then became an administrator and the founding Head Start director in Port Townsend. In the 1970s, she became an entrepreneur and founded two businesses: a plant store and a chocolate shop.

Susan Harvey Manger ‘66 died on March 7 after a fight against pneumonia. She was 75. Born in Oregon, she earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from Puget Sound, where she joined the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority and met David Manger ’65, the man who would become her husband. She taught at Tacoma’s Annie Wright Schools.

Judith Mason Carlson ‘66, M.Ed.’87 passed away in Bellevue, Wash., on March 2. She was 75. Born in Oregon, she earned her bachelor’s degree in sociology and master’s degree in education from Puget Sound, where she was a member of the Delta Delta Delta sorority. She worked as a school librarian and administrator, finishing her career at Curtis Senior High School in University Place, Wash.

James Ismay ‘66 passed away in California on Jan. 5 at the age of 79. Born in Yelm, Wash., he went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science from Puget Sound, where he was also a member of the Phi Delta Theta fraternity. He had a long career in insurance brokering and automobile service writing.

Gerald Churchill ‘67 died in Browns Point, Wash., on April 24 after a short battle with cancer. He was 75. Born in Browns Point, he survived polio and became committed to living a physically active life. He earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Puget Sound, where he was a member of the university’s U.S. Air Force ROTC program. He joined the Air Force after graduating and served for 27 years. He retired as a lieutenant colonel in 1995. He began a second career, opening his own septic business, and worked for 25 years until becoming ill.

Lowell Daun ‘68, a Puget Sound trustee emeritus, passed away May 1 when the Cessna airplane in which he was a passenger crashed in Tehama County, Calif. He was 72. Lowell graduated from Puget Sound with a bachelor’s degree in biology and earned his Doctor of Dentistry degree from the University of the Pacific. He worked as a dentist for Delta Dental of California for 31 years before retiring. In addition to his trusteeship at Puget Sound, he was a member of the Chico Country Day School board of directors for more than 10 years.

Claudia Johnson Brooke ‘69 died on April 7, three weeks before her 82nd birthday. She attended Puget Sound, where she was a member of the Kappa Alpha Theta sorority. 

Glynn Price ‘71 passed away on March 11 in Bremerton, Wash. He was 72. Born in Tacoma and raised in Bremerton, Glynn graduated from East High School before attending the University of Washington. He was drafted into the U.S. Army and, after completing his service, earned a bachelor’s degree in history from Puget Sound, where he was a member of the Sigma Nu fraternity. He went on to open a fish market, commercial wood-cutting company, and commercial shellfish company.

Arlene Stanfill ‘71 passed away on Feb. 1, her 70th birthday, after living with breast cancer for 10 years. She grew up in Tacoma and graduated from Stadium High School before earning a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Puget Sound. She settled in Dallas, Texas, and worked as a social worker.

Kristin Kenney Lichau ‘73 died in California on April 24 at the age of 67. Born and raised in Santa Rosa, Calif., she graduated from Piner High School and earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Puget Sound. She went on to earn her doctorate in podiatric medicine.

Richard Williams ‘74, ‘76, J.D.’81, a veteran of the U.S. Air Force and former Boeing mechanic, died on March 12. He was 73. Born in Tennessee in 1945, he attended segregated schools and graduated from Webb High School before joining the Air Force during the Vietnam War. He served as an aircraft mechanic at Phan Rang Air Base and returned stateside, where he was stationed at McChord Air Force Base (now Joint Base Lewis-McChord). After completing his service, he became a mechanic and then a Tacoma police officer—the sixth African American officer to be hired by the department. While there, he earned bachelor’s degrees in political science and sociology from Puget Sound. He retired from the Tacoma Police Department in 1998, after 27 years on the force, and became an attorney.

Paul Dremousis M.P.A.’75 died on Feb. 19 at the age of 85. Paul was born in Greece, where his mother died during World War II while his father fought in the Greek resistance, leaving him to provide for his two younger brothers. To escape poverty, he emigrated to Yakima, Wash., when he was 18 and graduated from Moxie High School. He was drafted into the U.S. Army and stationed in Germany, where he earned top honors as a marksman. He returned to the U.S., became a citizen, and earned a bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Washington. He married, had two children, and began his career as a parole officer with the Department of Corrections. He earned a master’s degree in public administration from Puget Sound and worked in the King County Prosecutor’s Office for three decades before retiring in 1994.

John Reynolds ‘76, a Washington native Vietnam War veteran, passed away on April 2. He was 72. Born in Shelton, Wash., and raised in Lakewood, Wash., he graduated from Lakes High School before joining the U.S. Army. He earned a bachelor’s degree in public administration from Puget Sound and went on to work in state government, including as the director of the Department of Veterans Affairs and chief executive officer for Western State Hospital.

Tommy Spittler ‘80 died on Jan. 4 in Utah. He was 65. Born in California and raised in California and Utah, he graduated from Box Elder High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Puget Sound. He joined the U.S. Army as a medic and was a staff sergeant in the U.S. Air Force. He went on to work in vocational rehabilitation for the state of Utah.

Effie Hutcheson-Blackburn ‘81, an Idaho native, passed away on April 30 in Maryland. She was 60. Effie earned a bachelor’s degree in education from Puget Sound and worked for the U.S. Postal Service in Delaware.

Carl Solid ’84 passed away on Feb. 17 while riding his bike across Seattle’s Highway 520 bridge. He was 58. Born in Bellevue, Wash., he was active throughout his life as a skier, football player, and singer. As a Logger, he played lacrosse and majored in business administration. He worked as a loan officer for a short time before entering the real estate business. His true passion was the outdoors, and he hiked, biked long distance, and summited Mount Rainier and Mount Baker.

Anne Gruger M.Ed’86, a resident of Renton, Wash., died on Feb. 15 at the age of 89. Born in New York City, she grew up in Connecticut and met her husband, Jaime Gruger, at Connecticut College. They married in 1950, had four children, and settled in Boise, Idaho. Anne returned to school at the College of Idaho and earned her degree in English and secondary education before becoming a teacher. The family moved to Washington in 1979, and Anne earned her master’s degree in counseling from Puget Sound. She was preceded in death by Jaime, who died in 1999.

Nancy Zega ’87, a graduate of Puget Sound’s biology program, died on Jan. 12 in Utah. She was 74. Born and raised in Illinois, Nancy always dreamed of working in the medical field and completed her pre-med studies at Puget Sound. She graduated from Des Moines University’s College of Osteopathic Medicine with her medical degree and completed her residency at the age of 50. She practiced at Ogden Regional Hospital in Utah before serving as medical director there until a traumatic fall in 2011 ended her career.

Dorey Brown Weiss ’88 died in Tracy, Calif., on Jan. 16. She was 52. Dorey earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology from Puget Sound and was a member of the Kappa Kappa Gamma sorority.

Karen McDonald ’88, a graduate of Puget Sound’s computer science and mathematics program, passed away on April 1 after a long illness. She was 66. A native of California, she attended community college in Los Angeles and Olympia, Wash., before graduating from Puget Sound. Her family said she was a “talented female pioneer” who worked as a computer programmer and an information technology manager for the Olympia School District, Puget Sound Systems Group, and Washington’s recreation and conservation agency.

Stanley Williams M.A.T.’91, a longtime attorney and enthusiastic sports fan, died on Jan. 7. He was 72. Born in Maryland, Stanley was raised in Washington and graduated from West Bremerton High School before earning his bachelor’s and law degrees at the University of Washington. He later earned a master’s degree in education from Puget Sound and taught at Olympic College and Bremerton High School.

Tracy Pope ‘92 died on Feb. 14, three weeks after his 59th birthday. He graduated from Puget Sound with a bachelor’s degree in psychology and played basketball as a Logger. Tracy went on to work for the Department of Homeland Security, and retired in 2016.

Brenda Scott ‘94 died in Washington on March 23. She was a graduate of Mount Tahoma High School and earned a bachelor’s degree in comparative sociology from Puget Sound.

Caira Nakasone ‘06 passed away in Hawai`i on April 2 after a battle against cancer. She was 34. Remembered by her family as “the most selfless, kindest, and loving soul” and as always inquisitive, Caira earned a bachelor’s degree in politics and government from Puget Sound, a bachelor’s degree in sociology from Oregon State University, and a master’s degree in criminal justice administration from Chaminade University.