In Memoriam Winter 2011-12

December 14, 2011


Francis Elizabeth "Bess" Stallworth Sebesta, BS '32, MS '61, of Bryan, Texas, died Aug. 10 at age 101.


Cathryn Rumsey Bruce, BA '34, of Dallas, formerly a longtime resident of Waco, died Aug. 12. She was 97.

Vernetta Sanderford Burns, BS '34, died June 30 in Brady, Texas. She was 97. A retired teacher, Burns grew up on 5th Street in Waco and crossed Baylor's campus to attend public school.


Monk Bryan, BA '35, died in Dallas on Aug. 20. He was 97.


Sara Frances Tibbs Cason, BS '36, passed away Sept. 26 in Midland, Texas. She was 95.


Harry Glenn Hippel Sr., BBA '37, of Teague, Texas, died Aug. 11. He was 95.


Rhuey Bingham Cluck, BA '38, of Hutto, Texas, died Aug. 4 at age 93. As wife of the late Baptist pastor Sam Cluck, BA '45, she was a teacher for 45 years in Lorena, Waco LaVega and Bartlett.


Mary Helen Neelley Ware, BA '39, of Fort Worth, passed away Oct. 25. While at Baylor, she was a national collegiate debate champion. Ware was an officer in many community organizations, including the Tarrant County Medical Society Auxiliary and the Woman's Club of Fort Worth.


Roy A. Crouch Jr., BA '40, of Austin, passed away July 25 at age 90.

Mary Lee Eason, BA '40, of Waco, passed away Aug. 5. She was 92.


Dorothy Nell Short Rogers, BA '41, MA '49, of Marshall, Texas, passed away Aug. 28. She was 91. Rogers was a professor at East Texas Baptist University from 1944-86. She was named the Piper Professor of Texas in 1986.


Sarah Geraldine McCann Foy, BA '42, MA '49, of Corpus Christi, Texas, died Oct. 28. She was 91.

Iva Mae Preston Graham Lansford, BSN '42, formerly of Kosse, Texas, died Feb. 10 in Austin. She was 90.

Richard G. Snyder, BA '42, of South San Francisco, Calif., died July 29. He was 95. An Air Force World War II veteran, Snyder was a career saxophonist, backing many notable singers over the years, including Tony Bennett, Ella Fitzgerald, Bernadette Peters, Rosemary Clooney and Lou Rawls.

Dorotha Jean Bruce Thomas, BA '42, passed away Oct. 17.


Jack White Jeffrey, BA '43, of Waco, passed away July 31. He was 89. At Baylor, he lettered in football and track before entering the Navy, where he commanded a PT boat in World War II. He was later a vice president of Citizens National Bank and owner of Texas Fireproof Moving and Storage in Waco, as well as city manager of Carrizo Springs, Kerrville, Waco and Beaumont. He also served as president of Baylor/Waco Foundation and Greater Waco Chamber of Commerce. He was married more than 65 years to Marian Brennan Jeffrey, BA '42.

Lucile Priscilla Miller, BSN '43, of Williamsburg, Va., died Oct. 17. She was 90.

Nat Tanenbaum, BBA '43, age 88, of Pisgah Forest, N.C., passed away on July 27.


Myrna Smith Hook, BM '44, of Carthage, Texas, died Oct. 19. She was 87.

Mary Ellen Boyd Ransom, BSN '44, of Overland Park, Kan., passed away Aug. 26. She was 88.

Dr. James "Jim" H. Witt, MS '44, of Sherman, Texas, died July 28. He was 89.


Ola Mae Kemp Martin, BA '45, of San Angelo, Texas, died Sept. 1. She was 91.

Gwendolyn Jewell Neal Pate McClure, BSN '45, formerly of Bartlesville, Okla., died on Aug. 1 at age 87 in Leadville, Colo.

Helen Keller Smith, BA '45, of Garland, Texas, died in October at age 87. She married Jack Garner Smith of Waco in 1946. They settled in Garland, where Helen served on the PTA board, was a member of a garden club and served for years as a volunteer at Baylor Garland Hospital.


John W. Collins Jr., BBA '46, JD '49, of Dallas, died Aug. 14. He was 88.

J. Marie Gramling Duggan, BA '46, of McLean, Va., died July 26. She was 86.


Dr. James F. Fitch, '47, MD '49, of McAllen, Texas, passed away Oct. 6. He was 85. Fitch served in the Navy as a doctor in the Korean War and was awarded the Bronze Star. He practiced family medicine in McAllen for 50 years. He served as chief of staff at both Rio Grande Regional Hospital and McAllen Medical Center.

Dr. Stanley Earl Fowler, BA '47, of Tyler, Texas, passed away Aug. 30 at age 89. He served as a bomber pilot in World War II before returning to Baylor to finish his degree. Fowler was a professor at many universities, including Southern Mississippi, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Georgia, Tennessee and Texas Tech.

Wilda Marie Hammer, BA '47, MS '52, of Gatesville, Texas, died Sept. 19. She was 85.

Bernice M. Kidd Robertson, BA '47, of Granbury, Texas, died Aug. 23 at age 89.


Aubry Beiard, BA '48, of Colleyville, Texas, passed away Oct. 4. He was 94.

Ross Calvin Coggins, BA '48, of Annapolis, Md., passed away on Aug. 1 at age 83. Coggins held several different careers as a minister and missionary, a writer, Catholic Relief Services administrator and USAID Representative to the United Nations. He also organized and managed the U.S. government's Africa Emergency Office, facilitating disaster assistance during famine outbreaks. He traveled to more than 70 countries and marched alongside Martin Luther King Jr. in the 1960s. A gifted communicator, he was often called upon to brief media, heads of state and members of Congress, providing drafts and policy planning documents for the secretary of state and others.

William C. Fulton, BS '48, of La Marque, Texas, died July 29. He was 90.

George Barton Huffaker, BA '48, of Monticello, Ky., died Aug. 17. He was 90. A U.S. Marine during World War II, he fought in the Battle of Iwo Jima. He was a chemist with Union Carbide Nuclear Company and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, the nation's leading atomic research center.

Frank Kemble Jr., BA '48, MSEd '54, died on Aug. 16 in Austin at age 92.

Mary Lynne Leachman Neff, BM '48, of Dallas, died Aug. 16 at age 84.

Alva B. Stem Sr., BBA '48, of Waco, died Oct. 14. He was 85. Stem worked for the City of Waco for 40 years as director of parks and recreation and the Texas Ranger Hall of Fame and Museum. He served 40 years in the Texas National Guard, retiring as a major.

Dr. Owen C. Taylor Jr., BS '48, MD '51, of Artesia, N.M., died Oct. 12. He was 86.


Dr. William Adolphus Appling, BA '49, DDS '53, of Corpus Christi, Texas, died Aug. 2 at age 87.

Dr. Charles C. Craig, BA '49, DDS '52, of Floydada, Texas, died Sept. 28. He was 92. After serving in the Army Air Corps, Craig graduated from Baylor and practiced dentistry in Floydada for many years. He made 42 mission trips at his expense to provide treatment to Indian tribes and remote villages in Mexico and Central America. He was Floydada Citizen of the Year in 1997 and received the FAA Wright Brothers Master Pilot Award in 2007.

Frank Douglass Dickson, BBA '49, of Waco, passed away Sept. 18. He was 83. Dickson taught and coached at Prairie Hill High School before working for B&B Sporting Goods in Waco. He was inducted into the Texas High School Football Hall of Fame in 2009.

Hon. Harlan Dillman Friend, BBA '49, LLB '56, of Kingwood, Texas, died Aug. 22. He was 87.

John M. McDaniel, BBA '49, of Dallas, died Sept. 5 at age 87.

Frances Williams Tawater, BM '49, of Mansfield, Texas, died Oct. 28. She was 83.


Mary Lynn Isaacks Darden, BA '50, of Morehead City, N.C., passed away Sept. 16 at age 82. After teaching in Houston, she moved with her husband of 60 years, R.D. Darden Jr., to North Carolina, where she continued to teach until her retirement. Her parents (J.D. Isaacks, BA '16, and Ina Jones Isaacks, BA '15) and her surviving brother (Ret. Major-General Jim Isaacks, BA '47, of the USAF-R) of Bulverde, Texas, all graduated from Baylor.

Daniel Brooks Ray, BS '50, of Temple, Texas, died Aug. 3. He was 87.

Stephen Oliver Redacre Jr., BA '50, of Jerome, Ariz., died Aug. 21. He was 85.

Henry Perry Yates, BBA '50, of Temple, Texas, died March 28. He was 84.


Fred F. DeVaney Jr., BA '51, of San Angelo, Texas, died Aug. 28 at age 91.

Sidney Allen King Sr., JD '51, passed away April 20 in Beaumont, Texas. He was 84.

Maj. (Ret.) William Lee Ming, '51, passed away Sept. 9 in New Braunfels, Texas. Ming left his studies at Baylor to serve in the Air Force in Korea, but returned to be employed with the Texas Collection at Baylor for many years. Contributions may be made in his name to the Texas Collection.

Thomas G. Parker, BBA '51, of Taylor, Texas, passed away Sept. 24. He was 81. Parker was elected permanent class president while at Baylor and soon married Gwyna Lee Smith, BA '53. His career in banking spanned more than 40 years.

Billy Earl Patton, BBA '51, of Waco, passed away Oct. 25. He was 83.

Roy Ray Roberts, BA '51, died Aug. 17 in Richardson, Texas. He was 84.

Robert Porter "Buddy" Tinsley, BS '51, of Winnipeg, Manitoba, died Sept. 14. He was 87. An offensive lineman, Tinsley was a member of the Baylor Athletics Hall of Fame.

Janice Newland Williams, BA '51, of McGregor, Texas, died Oct. 20. She was 83.


Nina Harris Stephens, BBA '52, of Chandler, Texas, died Oct. 24. She was 79.

James Pendleton Thomas Jr., BA '52, of Broomfield, Colo., died on Aug. 2. He was 81.


Rev. Reuel Jennings Cooper, BA '54, of Lexington, Texas, passed away Oct. 26. He was 78.

Angeleen Engelbrecht Polley, of Bruceville, Texas, died Aug. 28. She was 71. Polley attended Baylor in the early 1960s and married Robert Polley, BA '54, MSEd '64, in 1964.

Mary Frances Ellis Waggener, BA '54, of Richardson, Texas, died Aug. 6 at age 77.


Dr. James O. Henry Jr., BS '55, DDS '58, of Dallas, died Oct. 1. He was 78. Henry practiced dentistry in Dallas from 1956-72, then served as assistant dean and professor at Baylor College of Dentistry from 1972-98.

Emojean Baker Kelley, BA '55, of Houston, died Aug. 15. She was 79.

Charles Edward Smith, BBA '55, of Naples, Texas, died Aug. 27. He was 78.

Billy Greene Walls, BM '55, died in Auburn, Ala., on Sept. 13. He was 77. Walls was an Auburn University professor of music and director of bands emeritus.


Dr. Maple Leroy Avery, BA '56, passed away in Burnet, Texas, on Aug. 25. He was 80.

Bobby Ray Brock, BS '56, of Killeen and Temple, Texas, passed away Sept. 11. He was 77. Brock earned his master's degree at Tarleton State. He worked for 41 years as a teacher, coach and principal in the Abbott, Lorena, Valley Mills, Bruceville-Eddy and Killeen school systems. He is survived by his wife of eight years, Mary Bryant Bradley, BA '66. Memorial gifts may be made to the Bobby R. and Paula Coody Brock Endowed Scholarship Fund.

Jim Bob Harris, BS '56, of Houston, died Aug. 15. He was 81.

Robert H. McCarty, BA '56, of Tyler, Texas, died Sept. 5. He was 77.

Herbert Thomas Weaver Jr., BA '56, died on Aug. 30 in Tulsa, Okla. He was 76. Weaver worked with Curtin Matheson Scientific in Dallas and Houston before retiring in 1993. He also served as a Royal Ambassador counselor and director for several churches and leadership camps and co-authored 100 Years of Royal Ambassadors, which received an award from the Texas Baptist Historical Society.


Ola Mae Cowart Kuykendall, MSEd '57, of Longview, Texas, died Aug. 20. She was 83.

Donald Nelson Mize, BA '57, of McGregor, passed away Oct. 7. He was 80.

Charles Wayne Rosson, BA '57, of Springdale, Ark., died Aug. 5 at age 76. An ordained Southern Baptist minister since 1954, Rosson served as pastor of several churches in three states, as a chaplain at Baylor University Medical Center in Dallas, and as an evangelist traveling across the U.S. and in several foreign countries.


Bryan Lawton Blackburn Jr., BS '58, of Tyler, Texas, died Aug. 16. He was 75.


Carol Brent Bedsole, BSHE '59, died Aug. 14. She was 73.

L. Don Dodson Sr., BBA '59, of North Richland Hills, Texas, died Aug. 13. He was 76.

Bobby L. Hillegeist, BBA '59, of Houston, passed away Sept. 28. He was 74.


Bob Clinton Yancy, BA '60, of Sulphur Springs, Texas, died Sept. 16. He was 73.


Jack Warner Beech Sr., JD '62, of Bedford, Texas, passed away Sept. 7 at age 75.

James J. Young, MHA '62, of San Antonio, died Aug. 31 at age 84. Young served in the U.S. Army for 36 years, retiring as brigadier general and chief of the Army Medical Service Corps. Afterwards, he was dean of the University of Texas Medical School in San Antonio. He received numerous military medals and authored the Allied Heath Manpower Act signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson in 1969.


Michael Jay Rune, BBA '63, of Flower Mound, Texas, passed away Oct. 16. He was 69.


Eilleen Thomas, BA '65, of Fort Worth, died Aug. 24. She was 67.


Annie Schwettmann, BSEd '66, of Waco, died Sept. 12. She was 67.

James Warren Smith Jr., BA '66, JD '69, of Pearsall, Texas, died Aug. 14 at age 67.

Betty Lee Shore Ward, BA '66, of Hunt, Texas, passed away July 31. She was 66.


Dr. Carol Ann Steckline Lewis, BA '67, of Mesquite, Texas, died Aug. 30 at age 66.

Thomas C. Miller Jr., BA '67, of Beaumont, Texas, passed away July 30. He was 66. Miller was a veteran newsman, teacher and former managing editor of the Houston Chronicle and Beaumont Enterprise. He taught at the University of Mississippi and Fresno State University. During his time at Baylor, he was manager of the Baylor Lariat.


Dr. Samuel Lynn Beavers, BS '68, of Little Rock, Ark., died Aug. 7 at age 66. He was owner and senior dental professional of Arkansas Dental Health & TMJ Therapy Center.

Richard Edwin Wilkes Sr., '68, of Houston, died Sept. 24. He was 65. Wilkes worked in the financial services industry and was a guest lecturer at Baylor and other universities, giving more than 100 keynote speeches across the country.


Mary Jean Diebel Bevil, BA '69, MSEd '72, of San Antonio, passed away Aug. 12. She was 64.

Martha Helen Biggs, MA '69, of Montgomery, Ala., died Aug. 18. She was 85. Biggs taught English and humanities at Alabama State University for 19 years.

Kerry Stephen Smith, BBA '69, of Richardson, Texas, died July 20. He was 64. Smith was retired from the insurance business. His parents, A.J. Smith Jr. and V. Marie Stephens, and brothers, Robert and Gilbert, were Baylor alumni.


Bishop Paul Francis Duffy, MA '70, of San Antonio, passed away Aug. 23. He was 79. Duffy spent 26 years in Zambia before his retirement this year.

Harlon Dean Fowler, BBA '70, of Izoro, Texas, died Aug. 23 at age 68.

Jackie Laverne Gilbert, BSPE '70, passed away Aug. 8. She was 63.

Dr. Gennady Evgenievich Platoff, MHA '70, of Fairfax, Va., died Aug. 31 at age 90. Born in Russia, Platoff's father was killed in the Bolshevik Revolution. The family eventually made its way to the U.S., where Platoff served in the Army as a physician for 33 years, receiving many medals and commendations in many different theaters. He served in the First MASH unit in Korea, the template for the TV show and movie. He was the personal U.S. physician for Nazi war criminal Rudolph Hess at Spandau Prison. After his service, he joined the State of Virginia Health Department as an assistant director and later as a director of public health in Falls Church, Va.

Dr. Albert F. Staples, PhD '70, of Oklahoma City, passed away Oct. 19. He was 89. He was a captain in the Air Force, serving in both World War II and the Korean War. In 1970, Staples was appointed professor and chair of oral surgery in the newly organized University of Oklahoma College of Dentistry until he retired in 1985. He was professor emeritus at Baylor Dental School in Dallas until he permanently retired in 1992.

Charles Gary Worley, BS '70, of St. Simons Island, Ga., died Aug. 6. He was 64.


Thomas Rutledge Cushman, JD '71, of St. Petersburg, Fla., died Sept. 27. He was 71.

Suzanne K. Verret, BMEd '71, of Atlanta, Ga., passed away Oct. 5. She was 62.


Brenda Kay Gardner, BSN '72, of Moore, Okla., passed away Oct. 19. She was 61.

Raymond Lee Reeve Jr., BA '72, of San Antonio, died Oct. 23. He was 61.


Dr. Paul C. Francis, BS '73, of Fishers, Ind., passed away Aug. 20. He was 60.

Linda Fay Jenkins, BBA '73, of Dallas, passed away Oct. 15. She was 60.


Virginia Mae Lester, BSEd '75, of Waco, passed away Oct. 14. She was 84.

Elaine Sammons, BSEd '75, of Waco, passed away Oct. 7. She was 79.


Patrick David Barber, JD '76, of Colorado City, Texas, died at age 65 on July 29.

Ronny Aaron Rigney, BS '76, of Waco, died Sept. 3. He was 74.


John Wilton Bates Jr., BBA '77, JD '80, of Rockwall, Texas, passed away July 25. He was 55.

Gregory Allen Hickman, MPT '77, of San Diego, died Aug. 18. He was 57.

Mark Harold Schnorrenberg, BA '77, MBA '98, of Marble Falls, Texas, died Aug. 25. He was 57.

Thomas Dale Whitworth, JD '77, of Joshua, Texas, died Aug. 27 at age 71.


Robert Allen Lawrence, '78, of Austin, died Aug. 16 at age 62.

Darrell Duane Vail, BA '78, of Alexandria, Va., died Aug. 2. He was 55.


Robert Nicholas Kemper Jr., BA '83, of Tyler, Texas, died Sept. 17. He was 51.


Marie Leone Wolfe, BA '84, MBA '89, of Greenville, Texas, passed away Oct. 9. She was 48.


Lisa A. Stamey, BA '85, of Corinth, Texas, died on Sept. 25. She was 48.


Charles Bradley Anderson, BBA '89, of Lewisville, Texas, died Aug. 5. He was 44.

Matthew Earl Piper, BBA '89, of Dallas, died Sept. 18. He was 45.


Russ Latham, BFA '92, of Los Angeles, died Aug. 18. He was 54. Latham had just been nominated for a Primetime Emmy for his work as head of the hair department on "America's Got Talent." He was also an actor and writer. The family asks that memorials be sent to Baylor Theater.


Jesse Clark Griffin Jr., BA '93, of Rosenthal, Texas, passed away Sept. 18. He was 76. After retiring from IBM, Griffin graduated from Baylor and worked in Moody Library from 1997-2003.


Jim Gerald Morris, BBA '97, of Johnson City, Texas, passed away Sept. 25. He was 37.


Vurlenda Hill, MSN '01, of Ector, Texas, died Oct. 18. She was 67.

Angela Jo Risovi, BBA '01, of Houston, passed away Aug. 15. She was 35.


Scott Edward Abel, BA '05, of Waco, passed away in a car accident Nov. 13. He was 27. An avid Bears fan, Abel worked at Wells Fargo and was in the worship band at Trinity Lutheran Church. He leaves behind his wife, Lindsey, and their one-year-old daughter, Presley.

Arcadia "Katie" P. Niño, of Waco, passed away Aug. 15. She was 78. Niño worked as a real estate agent and, for 12 years, in the Baylor residence halls. A memorial scholarship is being created at Baylor in her honor.

Robert "Bob" Duke, of Houston, passed away Oct. 18. He was 83. Duke graduated from East Texas State College and served in the Texas National Guard. He retired from Exxon after 38 years. In response to Bob's value of education and Christian principles, his family established The Robert and Jeannine Duke Endowed Scholarship Fund at Baylor in 2002.

Robert George Millard, of Houston, passed away Aug. 16 at age 80. He spent 25 years with IBM as a systems analyst. Memorials may be made to the Myra S. Millard Scholarship Fund at Baylor.

Louis Howard Sommer, of Waco, died on July 29 in San Antonio. He was 80. Sommer worked for Southwestern Bell for 35 years. He also served on the Baylor/Waco Foundation and Baylor Professional Development Advisory Council. He received an honorary business degree from Baylor.