Page 86

in me mor ia m


Edited by Christine Terp Madsen ’73

1932 Violet Blanchard Myrvaagnes November 15, 2017 A sociology major, Violet Blanchard Myrvaagnes returned to school in 1968 to earn a master’s in education. She then went to work as a proofreader at several locations in Boston. At Bates, she played nearly every sport available to women, including baseball. In 2017, this magazine ran a brief item after her 105th birthday. “She cannot move around much and won’t be attending any more Reunions,” said her son Eric. “But she is still cheerful, still plays her recorder, and has her sense of humor.” In addition to Eric, survivors include son Rodney and a grandchild. She had a number of relatives, now deceased, who attended Bates: sister Hazel Blanchard Prosser ’29; brothers Loring W. Blanchard ’30 and Ernest R. Blanchard ’34; sisterin-law Ona Leadbetter Blanchard ’30; and niece Nancy Prosser ’64.

1936 Irving D. Isaacson March 30, 2018 Ike Isaacson was a blacksmith – not an overly muscled type wrestling horseshoes out of bars of barely yielding metal but a craftsman honing fine practical artwork from copper and brass. He also was a corporate lawyer, honing legal deals for entities such as L.L. Bean and AOL. He left Bates summa cum laude in economics and went immediately to Harvard Law School. When World War II came along, he signed up for the infantry and ended up in the OSS, forerunner to the CIA. It was while in service that he met Jutka Magyar, whom he married and whom we know as Judith Isaacson ’65, Bates’ renowned dean of women and dean of students. She died in 2015. Together they formed the L&A Fund, an informal way to do good things in the Lewiston/Auburn community. A Bates trustee for six years, he was an alumni class officer and a member of his 55th and 60th Reunion committees. Survivors include children John Isaacson, Ilona Bell, and Mark Isaacson; eight grandchildren,


Fall 2018

including Tess Goode ’07; and one great-grandchild. His cousins, both deceased, were Phillip M. Isaacson ’47 and Harris M. Isaacson ’22. Several in-laws also were graduates: Deborah Rosen Isaacson ’54 and Herbert A. Miller ’38.

V-12 William E. Chipman October 24, 2017 William Chipman came to Bates for the V-12 program. He graduated from UC Berkeley. His career was in hosiery, serving as president of Chas Chipman Sons Co. and then as board chairman of Chipman-Union Mfg. Co. until retirement in 1985. Survivors include wife Theresa Vadnais Chipman and stepdaughter Patricia Clerkin. Paul J. Mitchell February 11, 2018 Paul Mitchell came to Bates as part of the V-12 program, going on to graduate from UMaine Orono in 1949 and earn a master’s from Columbia in 1950. He built a career in insurance, starting with Liberty Mutual and ending with his own agency in Waterville. He served the city of Waterville in several capacities and was a UMaine trustee. In 2006, he was recognized by the Maine House of Representatives for a lifetime of achievement including serving as president of the Maine Insurance Agents Assn. Survivors include wife Yvette Pooler Mitchell; children Paul Jr., Linda Price, Jeffrey, and William; 12 grandchildren, including Bethany Mitchell-Legro ’08; and six great-grandchildren.

1939 Winifred Libby Harlow December 18, 2009 Polly Libby Harlow was a musician who taught piano for much of her life. She was a member of the Polymnia Society, her church choir, and the Beethoven Society. She also painted in oils and especially enjoyed painting birds.

1943 Roy Phillip Fairfield January 22, 2018

If you loved “Cultural Heritage” – aka “Cultch” – or hated it, you have Professor Roy Fairfield to thank. He founded the program of courses in cultural history at Bates and taught in it for 10 years, 1947–57. He graduated from Bates in 1943 with a degree in English and returned four years later with a master’s from Harvard in American civilization (followed by a doctorate in 1953). After leaving Bates, he was a professor of social science at Ohio Univ. (1957–64), and a history professor at Antioch College (1964–66). He was the first director of the Antioch New England Graduate School in Putney, Vt., and a co-creator and first dean of an experimental doctoral program, Union Graduate School, at the Union Institute of Cincinnati, Ohio. Fairfield was the author of two books on the history of Saco, his beloved hometown, as well as two novels, three books of poetry, and countless newspaper articles. He served Bates as a member of his 50th Reunion committee and the Alumni Council. Survivors include wife Maryllyn Rumery Fairfield; and daughter Donna.

1944 Louise Gifford Gibbs February 11, 2018 “Giffy” Gibbs had an unusual teaching career: She and her late husband Daniel W. Gibbs ’44 spent two years in Moscow, where she taught and he was director of the Anglo-American School. They were wined and dined at many foreign embassies, which considered them VIPs, but their apartment, phone, and car were bugged and their apartment was often “visited” by the KGB in their absence. She also taught at the elementary and secondary levels in Hingham, Mass., after completing a master’s in education from Bridgewater (Mass.) State. She was a member of her 50th and 55th Reunion committees, a former class agent, and a BCDC career adviser. Survivors include children Thomas Gibbs, Linda Gutterman, and Deborah GibbsBrooks; and five grandchildren. Her grandniece is Catherine Merton ’18. Her late brother-inlaw was Joseph F. Gibbs ’58. Nina Leonard Sloan February 18, 2018 Nina Leonard Sloan held a variety of social service jobs during her life, but they all centered around one thing: helping children. She earned a master’s in child development from Bank Street College of Education and became a licensed psychotherapist. In between those milestones, she worked in early childhood education, special education, and day care administration. Survivors include daughters Ruth Berger and Victoria Swensen; five grandchildren; and five great-grandchildren. Her niece is Nina J. Mendall ’65, and her great-niece is Carrie Jewell ’97. Her late sister and brother-in-law were Lucille Leonard Jewell ’42 and Malcolm L. Jewell ’42.

1945 Marion Otis Donnell December 15, 2017 Marion Otis Donnell graduated cum laude in Latin and was admitted to Phi Beta Kappa. She taught Latin and English in Jay, Richmond, and Winthrop. She served as organist at the United Church in Monmouth for over 30 years, and was the first woman elected to Monmouth Academy’s board of trustees. Survivors include children Norma Leonard and Wayne Donnell; three grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. Her niece is Kathryn Skinner Sever ’71; her in-laws are Linda Halleck Putnam ’70 and Kendall C. Putnam ’69. Her late sister was Louise Otis Smith ’44, and her late cousin was Irene Cook Putnam ’37.

1946 William Hassett Canty December 22, 2017 Hank Canty left Bates temporarily to serve in the U.S. Army Air Forces as a radio operator during World War II. He actually graduated in 1948 with a degree in chemistry, but maintained his affiliation with his original class. He worked as a chemist at R.T. Vanderbilt Co. until retiring in 1986. He was said to be the star of every dance floor he set foot on. Survivors include wife Helen Reilly Canty; children Suzanne Hilson, Kathleen Lesh, Deborah Gula, Timothy Canty, and Mary Beth Canty; nine grandchildren; and three great-grandsons. His late sister-in-law was Kathleen Reilly Parkington ’46. Geraldine Nickerson Coombs December 27, 2017 In 2012, Gerry Nickerson Coombs was recognized as citizen of the year by the city of Bath, the culmination of a lifetime of service to her hometown. “She’s a one-woman dynamo,” said a fellow volunteer at a dedication ceremony where a young double white horse chestnut tree (her favorite) was planted in honor of the charter member of the Bath Community Forestry Committee. She held a degree in English from Bates as well as a master’s in education from USM. She also was trained to teach blind children through a program at Perkins School for the Blind. She served on the board of the Bath Area Food Bank, and worked on several Habitat for Humanity builds. A charter member of Literacy Volunteers of Bath, she served as its treasurer, librarian, and ESL teacher. She also taught for 11 years in the Bath and Brunswick school systems. Survivors include children Paul Coombs and Eileen Goddard; four grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren. Dorothy Lichter Schwartz February 9, 2018 Dorothy Schwartz worked as a substitute teacher while volunteering for several charitable organizations. She also clerked in Schwartz Hardware for

Profile for Bates College

Bates Magazine, Fall 2018  

The issue's cover story looks at Bates alumni and their cool Antarctic doings. The photo, by Billy Collins ’14, shows an equipment operator...

Bates Magazine, Fall 2018  

The issue's cover story looks at Bates alumni and their cool Antarctic doings. The photo, by Billy Collins ’14, shows an equipment operator...