Friday, March 8, 2013
Kent native spent later years in California
Friday, March 8
Robert E. Farrell (Bob), age 86, passed away on March 1st in the San Francisco Bay area of California. He lived most of his life in Kent and Cuyahoga Falls before moving to California early in the 21st Century to be near his son. A week after turning 17, Bob enlisted in the U.S. Navy during wartime in February of 1944. Serving as a Torpedoman’s Mate he was awarded two Liberation of the Philippines medals, the Asiatic Pacific Campaign Medal, the American Area Campaign Medal, and the World War II Victory Medal. He later served on board the USS Stack as she was readied for the atomic bomb tests at Bikini Atoll in the Marshall Islands during Operation Crossroads. Over 31 years Bob worked for B.F. Goodrich Research in Brecksville, and later …
Tuesday, March 5, 2013
Kent poet Merle Mollenkopf died Wednesday at 78
To keep the memory, and works, of Kent poet Merle Mollenkopf alive his son, Mark, has created a Facebook page dedicated to Mollenkopf. The Kent poet died last week at 78 after a battle with esophageal cancer. You can find written poems, videos of Mollenkopf reciting poetry, photos, stories from family members and more on the page, which you can find by clicking on this link. Mollenkopf's favorite works also were preserved in audio recordings.
Thursday, February 28, 2013
Kent resident dies at home at 78 following battle with cancer
Poet Merle Mollenkopf's name and words are on the lips of many in the Kent art community today. Mollenkopf, 78, died this week after battling esophegeal cancer. Friends have shared images and memories on Facebook the past 24 hours since word of his death started to spread. "He was an encyclopedia of poems," fellow Kent poet Maj Ragain said of his friend. "He was full of poems." Click here to read about how Mollenkopf's poems are preserved on audio recordings. Ragain and Mollenkopf met at the start of open poetry readings in the early 1980s at what then was Brady's Cafe, now Starbucks, at the corner of Lincoln and Main streets. Mollenkopft was a fixture there, recalls Brady's Cafe owner Bonny Graham Esparza. "He was there all the time," …
Monday, September 17, 2012
Gary Locke spent entire 32-year career in Kent
Family, friends and colleagues are mourning the loss of longtime Kent Community Development Department Director Gary Locke today. Locke died over the weekend after a 13-month battle with leukemia. The 32-year employee of the city of Kent spent nearly his entire professional career in the community planning office. Kent Mayor Jerry Fiala said as a senior member of the city's administration Locke played an instrumental role in Kent's more than $100 million downtown redevelopment. "Gary will always live forever in the city of Kent because of that foundation he left behind," Fiala said. "That’s his legacy." Locke was a Ravenna resident and 1974 graduate of Ravenna High School. He graduated from the University of Akron in 1978 with a bachelor's…
Tuesday, May 29, 2012
Erica Lilly, 50, died May 22
The Kent State University Libraries are without their chemistry and physics librarian after she lost her battle with cancer this month. Erica Barditch Lilly, 50, a Baltimore native, died May 22 following 10 years with the disease. Lilly, an associate professor, had served for 17 years as a faculty member at Kent State. She earned a master's degree in library science from the University of Maryland. Erin Michael, an administrative assistant in Kent State's chemistry and biochemistry department, said Lilly's positive attitude earned the admiration of faculty and students alike. "Erica's beautiful soul, gentle spirit, kind heart, witty personality and thoughtfulness resulted in a legacy that only few could hope to follow," her obituary reads …
Thursday, October 20, 2011
Beckett, 53, lost his battle with cancer Wednesday
I didn't know Don Beckett nearly as well as most of you who are reading this. For me, that's an unfortunate fact. Beckett, 53, lost his 11-month battle with cancer Wednesday. I first met Don in January, just a few weeks after his diagnosis with esophageal cancer. I was interviewing Don about a trip members of the Kent fire and police departments arranged for him and his wife, Heidi. It was an all expenses paid trip to see the 2011 Sugar Bowl, which saw Beckett's favorite Ohio State University Buckeyes beat the University of Arkansas Razorbacks in dramatic fashion. The diagnosis was somewhat bewildering to Beckett because he didn't smoke or drink and, instead, enjoyed a life filled with cycling, hiking and kayaking. "I don’t have any of the…
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Don Beckett retired in August after 23 years on the fire department
Kent firefighter Don Beckett lost his 11-month battle with cancer today. Beckett's fight with cancer started in December, when doctors found a tumor in his esophagus. He's been undergoing aggressive treatments since, and in August he was forced to retire from the Kent Fire Department. His Facebook page evolved into a memorial today as friends and family posted farewell messages. Look for the full obituary Thursday on Kent Patch.
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
He also was an ordained Brethren in Christ minister
D. Ray Heisey, 79, professor and director emeritus of communication studies at Kent State University, died of complications from thyroid cancer May 20. During his 30-year career at Kent State, the Kent resident served as professor of public address and intercultural communication and later directed the school of communication studies. He retired in 1996 and received the President’s Medal in 1997. Heisey also served in various capacities at universities around the world. From 1975 to 1987, he was president of Damavand College in Tehran, Iran. He taught at Peking University in Beijing, China, during the fall semesters of 1996 and 2000, when he served as editor of Chinese Perspectives in Rhetoric and Communications. Heisey initiated exchange …
Saturday, April 23, 2011
The Ohio Bell retiree built a scale model of the city with its canal and railroad for the Kent Historical Society Museum.
In June 2010, John P. Wunderle, the Kent Historical Society’s expert on the canal period and the railroad, gave a talk on the History of Transportation and Railroads at the historic Erie Railroad Shops, now the home of Davey Drill on West Williams Street. Halfway through his presentation, a train on the B&O tracks went by with its whistle blowing. The crowd oohed. Then Wunderle said, "There will be three more whistles." He took that opportunity to explain the whys and wherefores of train whistles, while seeming to cue each whistle, until resuming his prepared talk after the last whistle sounded. “He loved to know how things worked, and he loved to explain them so you knew how they worked,” said Sandy Halem, president of the Kent Historical…
Thursday, April 21, 2011
He also played trumpet with Tony's Angels and served on the Portage County Democratic Party executive committee.
Anthony A. Silvidi, who taught physics at Kent State University for 40 years, helped develop a doctoral program for the university’s physics department, served on the Executive Committee of Portage County Democratic Party and led a band called Tony’s Angels. The Kent resident, who died April 18 at age 91, became an assistant professor of physics at KSU in 1952. He was made a full professor in 1964, retired in 1982 and continued to teach and do research until 1992. Silvidi, who conducted research in nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) and biophysics, published two textbooks, wrote numerous articles for scientific journals and gave presentations at many scientific meetings. He received a NATO grant in 1972 to deliver a paper on NMR at the …