News & Notes

Posted by Paula Paine on March 18, 2014 in

In Memoriam

Barry King ’72 of Amarillo, Texas, died September 24, 2013. He was an assistant professor of communication at Ottawa University from 1990-2000. King is survived by his wife, Sandy; sons Scott King, Keith King and Jay Green; daughter Stacey Parsons; and seven grandchildren.

Dr. William Myers passed away on January 8, 2014, at the age of 95. He was a professor of sociology at Ottawa University for 31 years. He retired from the University in 1986. Myers sponsored the OU Class of 1958 and was named an honorary member of the class in 2008. His wife of 68 years, Alice, preceded him in death in 2007. He is survived by his brother, Robert Sprague; daughter Gweneth Nance; son Christopher Myers; three grandchildren, three step-great-grandchildren and many nieces and nephews.

Dr. Charles M. Rich passed away on February 10, 2014. He was a professor of philosophy at Ottawa University in the 1970s. He is survived by his sister, Eleanore Turner.

Gustave A. Gabelman ’36 died on September 21, 2012, at the age of 99. He is survived by his two sisters, Hulda Ulrich and Minnie Fabricius; two daughters, Ruth Tromble and Beth Thompson; and five grandchildren.

Evelyn M. Huber ’41 passed away on January 3, 2014, at age 99. Survivors include five nieces, a nephew, and several grand nieces and nephews.

Raymond S. Schmidt ’43 died on January 12, 2014.

Wendy Teel ’43 died on September 27, 2013, at her home in Tulsa, Oklahoma. Survivors include her children, Larry Teel and Kimberly Turner, and her four grandchildren.

Nancy (Longnecker) Lamb ’50 passed away September 17, 2013. She is survived by her sons, Harold and Charles; three grandchildren; and one great-grandchild.

Anna Mae (George) Markin Plepler ’50 died October 22, 2013, at the age of 85. She was a long-time music teacher in the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District.

Celeste Reynolds ’50 passed away on October 11, 2013. She is survived by her husband, Louis; her son, Tracy; her daughter, Shannon Spangler; her sister, Gwen Garrigues; and four grandchildren.

Harold Thyr ’53. Ottawa University received word that Harold Thyr passed away in December of 2012.

Gayle F. Twyman ’53 passed away on January 24, 2014, at age 82. Survivors include his brother, Wayne Twyman; son Frederick; three grandchildren; and two great grandchildren.

Henry George Duerksen ’54 died October 4, 2013, at the age of 84. He is survived by his wife, Dorothy ’52; son Edward; daughter Debra Flatt; and five grandchildren.

Gene A. Miller ’54 passed away January 26, 2014, at the age of 81. He is survived by his wife, Alice; children John Leonard Miller, Mary Ruth Johnson, Johnnie Santos, and Leticia Latham; brother David Miller; sisters Julie Wylie and Mary Jane Torres; and 10 grandchildren.

Marvin “Doc” Wollen ’54 passed away on September 10, 2013, at his home in Olathe, Kansas. He was 81 years of age. Survivors include his wife of 61 years, Sally; his sister, Alberta Schulte; daughters Cathy Maxwell, Terri Wilke, and Tammi Watkins; six grandchildren; and two great-grandchildren; as well as many nieces and nephews.

Melva Jean Lewis ’55 passed away on August 30, 2013, one day before her 84th birthday.

Phyllis (Cole) Southworth ’55 passed away on September 26, 2013, at age 80. She is survived by her husband, James; her brother, C.R. Cole; nieces and nephews; great-nieces and nephews; great-great-nieces and nephews; and many cousins.

Diana (Rogier) D’Aboy ’59 passed away November 24, 2013. She is survived by her husband of 55 years, John; her four children, Jim, Bob, Sara, and Steve; eight grandchildren; and four brothers and sisters.

Ruth Horike ’61 died on December 30, 2013. She is survived by her husband, Mike Horike.

Connie Lee DeLong ’63 passed away on October 4, 2013, at age 72. Survivors include her daughters, Elizabeth Lindsey and Katherine DeLong; her son, John DeLong; sister J’Me Hood; and granddaughter Genevieve.

Linda S. Maddux ’64 died on December 10, 2013, at the age of 71. She is survived by her husband, Jere Maddux; her son, Andrew; daughter Katherine; and her grandchildren.

Leonard C. Erickson ’68 passed away May 19, 2013, at the age of 66. He was preceded in death by his father, Charles, and is survived by his wife, Pamela; mother Priscilla Faith Downey; brother Clifford; daughters Priscilla and Laura; nieces Kirsten Keyser and Kari Greenfield; and six great nieces and nephews.

Walt Qualkenbush ’69. Ottawa University received word that Walt Qualkenbush died on September 14, 2010.

Robert Moore II ’75 passed away on December 4, 2013, at age 59. He is survived by his wife, Robin; his children, Lindsay Webdell, Robert Moore III, and Alex Moore; siblings Denise Perkins and Brad Moore; and his grandchildren.

George Kerr Brown IV ’77 passed away on December 6, 2013. He is survived by his daughter, Angelina Bertrand; his stepson, Thomas Clingerman; two sisters, Muriel Pearson and Laurie Diaz; and four grandchildren.

Lisa Ruth Aden Darrah passed away on January 13, 2014, at age 54. She is survived by her husband of 35 years, Mark Darrah; her mother, Tommie Aden; her children, Marcus, Aislinn, Elise, and Robert; and her brother, Keith.

David H. Fitzgerald ’86 passed away on March 3, 2013.

Diane L. Goff ’92 AZ died January 29, 2012. She is survived by her husband of 28 years, Michael; her brothers, Terry McLaren, Donald McLaren, Tim Murphy, Thomas McLaren, and James McLaren; sisters Susan Burian and Kathy Murphy; and over 65 nieces and nephews.

Donald J. Artes ’98 died on May 24, 2013, at age 54. He is survived by his wife, Lois; daughter Rachel; sons Daniel and Joel; three brothers, Lawrence, Raymond and Martin; a grandson; and many nieces and nephews.



Bill Kahler ’55 and G. Larry Larkin ’56 were members of the OU basketball team that won the conference championship 59 years ago. Kahler celebrated his 80th birthday on December 10, 2013.

Rev. Ben Moor ’58 has a new part-time job as a pastor to seniors at First Baptist Church in Lebanon, Missouri.


Bob Porter ’63 was honored as the 2013 Bal Jeffrey recipient at Stormont-Vail of Topeka, KS. He is credited with starting dialysis therapy in 1974 for patients experiencing kidney failure around northeast Kansas. Before he arrived in Topeka, residents had to travel to Wichita, Kansas City, Omaha, or even Denver for treatments.

Richard “Dick” Booth ’66 is the assistant track coach for the University of Alabama “Crimson Tide.”

Donald Wells ’68 has retired after 42 years of ministry. He retired on June 30, 2013, after a 16-year pastorate at Piqua Baptist Church in Piqua, Ohio. He and his wife, Connie, have relocated to Greenwood, Indiana, to be closer to family.

Don Creed ’69 shared his email in order to reconnect with classmates:

Janice Shierling ’69 and her family relocated from their family farm into an apartment at Pleasant View Estates in Inman, Kansas.


Dr. Lawrence Watt ’73 “finally” completed his EdD 40 years after graduating from Ottawa University. His wife, Keli; oldest son, Dylin and family; youngest daughter, Emily;and youngest son, Dakota, attended the graduation ceremony at the University of Phoenix. The family then spent a week vacationing in Arizona, including a visit to the OU-Phoenix campus. Watt, his wife and a daughter all work for Prince George’s County (MD) Public Schools’ Department of Special Education. Watt’s dissertation was titled “Historical Relevance: NCLB in Relation to Exclusion of Prince George’s County ADHD and LD Students.”


Ron McKeefry ’97 was named the Director of Strength and Conditioning for Eastern Michigan University on January 16, 2014. In 2013, Mckeefry was recognized as a Master Strength & Conditioning Coach at the annual conference for the Collegiate Strength and Conditioning Association and the Collegiate Strength & Conditioning Coaches Association in Kansas City, Mo. He was also named the Under Armour Collegiate Strength & Conditioning Coach of the Year in 2008 while working as the Head Strength & Conditioning Coach at the University of South Florida. Throughout his career, he has worked as a strength and conditioning coach for several professional teams, including the Tampa Bay Buccaneers (1999-2000) and the Cincinnati Bengals (2013).


Jason A. Koch ’08 now has a job in the granite industry as Vice President of Operations. He and his wife, Shannon, have eight children.


Steven Currie ’13 KC has taken six months off from working on his graduate degree from OU to go on a fully sponsored mission trip to the Philippines. He was on a waiting list for three years and finally received the good news in 2013. He has also sponsored a young girl for the last nine years through Compassion International. He is stationed about 300 miles away from her while he is in the Philippines helping build homes and churches. The trip started in January and Currie will return in