In Memoriam

Napa Valley couple who perished were UW alums

Oct 12, 2017
Photo: Mr. & Mrs. Rippey

In a heartbreaking UW connection to the raging California wildfires, a couple aged 98 and 100 died Sunday as their caregiver tried to rescue them from the flames. Sara and Charles Rippey, originally of Hartford, Wisconsin, both graduated from UW-Madison.

Edwin Lightfoot was renowned biochemical engineer

Oct 10, 2017
Photo: Edwin Lightfoot

Edwin Lightfoot, Hilldale Professor Emeritus of Chemical Engineering, died Oct. 2 at age 92. Lightfoot was a brilliant researcher on transport phenomena known for his ability to clearly convey complex topics in the classroom and instill a love of learning — and of chemical engineering — in his students.

UWPD bomb and tracking dog is put to rest

Oct 5, 2017
Photo: K9 Odin

Odin, the UW Police Department’s oldest active K9 officer, has died. Odin was an explosive-detection and tracking dog. He was one of only a few K9s in the nation to have found a live explosive device on a deployment. He worked with the Secret Service, FBI and other law enforcement agencies.

Cook was educator, scientist, entrepreneur

Sep 12, 2017
Photo: Mark Cook

Mark Cook, a professor of animal science whose research yielded advances in human health and food production, died from complications of cancer Sept. 9. An avowed “chickenologist,” Cook had more than 40 patents, three startups, and a strong record of involvement in university initiatives.

Groves was a leader in cooperative education

Sep 5, 2017
Photo: Frank Groves

Francis W. “Frank” Groves died Aug. 4 at Fern Glen Farm, the Groves’ family home since the 1860s. Groves was director of University Center for Cooperatives from 1970 until 1989. Among his distinctions, he was a founding board member of Group Health Cooperative.

Truman Graf offered expertise on dairying

Aug 29, 2017
Photo: Truman Graf

Truman Graf, a prominent UW agricultural economist, died at age 94. During his 35 years on the faculty, industry and government leaders frequently sought out his expertise on dairy policy. He later traveled internationally to advise on how to improve farm income.

Wunderlin embodied University Housing’s values

Aug 15, 2017
Photo: Bob Wunderlin

Longtime University Apartments carpenter Bob Wunderlin passed away unexpectedly at work July 19 at the age of 60. Colleagues remember Wunderlin as an amazing staff member who embodied University Housing’s Core Values of care, optimism, creativity, excellence, respect, integrity and stewardship.

Phyllis Leckrone was educator, ‘band mom’

Aug 15, 2017
Photo: Mike & Phyllis Leckrone

Phyllis Bechtold Leckrone, 81, wife of UW Marching Band director Mike Leckrone and “band mom” to thousands of student musicians, died Aug. 8. A dedicated educator, Leckrone taught in the Middleton-Cross Plains school district for more than 25 years.

Biruté Ciplijauskaité was prolific scholar, archivist

Jul 18, 2017
Photo: Biruté Ciplijauskaité

Biruté Ciplijauskaité, former professor and senior fellow at the UW’s Institute for Research in the Humanities, died June 19. She was a scholar of Spanish poetry who brought international visibility to the archival materials in UW-Madison Libraries Special Collections.

Jack Thornbury was prominent radiologist

Jul 18, 2017
Photo: Jack Thornbury

Former Department of Radiology faculty member John R. (Jack) Thornbury has died at age 88. Thornbury brought the subspecialty of genitourinary radiology to national prominence in the 1970s. He served as a professor here from 1989 until his retirement in 1994.

Keely was prolific cancer researcher

Jul 11, 2017
Photo: Patti Keely

Patti Keely, a nationally recognized breast cancer researcher in the School of Medicine and Public Health, died June 24 after a battle with advanced pancreatic cancer. Keely chaired the Department of Cell and Regenerative Biology.

Lewis brought environmental concepts to planning

Jul 11, 2017
Photo: Phil Lewis

Phil Lewis, former chair of the Department of Landscape Architecture, died July 2. Founder of the Environmental Awareness Center in CALS, Lewis advanced the practice of identifying environmental corridors to help guide public planning decisions.

Maurer served CALS in variety of roles

Jun 27, 2017
Photo: Ellen Maurer

Dorothy “Ellen” Allbeck Maurer, who enjoyed a vibrant career as a teacher, writer, editor, photographer and international science communications consultant, died June 11. She retired from the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences in 2005.

Powertrain control pioneer Moskwa passes away

Jun 20, 2017
photo of John Moskwa

John Moskwa was known not only as an influential mechanical engineer but as a trumpet player and instructor. He taught at UW-Madison for 28 years and led the Powertrain Control Research Laboratory.

Baugh could relate to underrepresented students

Jun 6, 2017
Photo: James Baugh

James Baugh, former director of UW-Madison’s Five Year Program, died earlier this spring. Baugh came here in 1968 to serve as assistant director of a new program intended to increase the number of students of color at the university. He also held positions in the UW System and federal government.

Windsurfer dies in Lake Mendota accident

Jun 6, 2017
Photo: Yu Chen

A collision occurred Wednesday on Lake Mendota between the UW Lifesaving boat and a windsurfer, who suffered fatal injuries. Yu Chen, 43, was a Hoofers volunteer instructor and experienced windsurfer. The Dane County Sheriff’s Office is continuing to investigate.

Richard helmed alumni magazine in 1950s

Mar 2, 2017
Photo: George Richard

George Richard, a UW-Madison graduate and editor of the Wisconsin Alumnus magazine from 1951 to 1959, died Feb. 16 at age 93. He served in World War II, then finished his journalism studies here in 1947. His daughter, Jane Richard, serves as deputy secretary of the faculty.

Stubblefield to receive honorary degree posthumously

Feb 21, 2017
Photo: Clyde Stubblefield

Legendary drummer Clyde Stubblefield, who died Saturday, had been selected before his death to receive an honorary degree prior to spring commencement. He will now receive the award posthumously. Stubblefield called Madison home since the 1970s. Rolling Stone named him the 6th best drummer of all time.

Vansina was trailblazing African history scholar

Feb 14, 2017
Photo: Jan Vansina

Professor Emeritus Jan Vansina, one of the world’s foremost historians of Africa, died Feb. 8. The Belgian-born Vansina’s work led to acceptance in the academic world of oral traditions as valid sources of history, counter-ing the once-prevalent attitude that cultures without texts had no history.

Beyler served campus in University Communications

Feb 14, 2017
Photo: Liz Beyler Kraak

Liz Beyler Kraak, a former UW-Madison broadcast and university relations specialist, died Feb. 9. She earned a journalism degree from the UW, then worked for WIBA radio. She was the first female reporter to become a regular in the all-male press room at the State Capitol. Services will be held Thursday.