* The Rev. J. Robert Williams, 37, the first openly gay...


December 31, 1992

* The Rev. J. Robert Williams, 37, the first openly gay man to be ordained a priest in the Episcopal Church, has died of an AIDS-related pulmonary infection. Mr. Williams, who was asked to resign just six weeks after his controversial ordination in December 1989, died on Christmas Eve at Beth Israel Hospital in Boston. He was diagnosed with AIDS in November 1990. He renounced his association with the Episcopal Church in 1991, but continued to work as a Christian priest, joining the Western Orthodox Catholic Church in America. The group is a small denomination unaffiliated with Rome or the Eastern Orthodox Church.

* W. L. "Putt" Powell, 80, a sports writer and columnist at the Amarillo Globe-News in Texas, died Dec. 24 of cancer.

BTC * Wayne Satz, 47, an award-winning TV reporter who broke the 1984 McMartin Pre-School molestation story in Manhattan Beach, Calif., died Dec. 24 of an apparent heart attack.

* John G. Kemeny, 66, a former president of Dartmouth College and co-creator of the widely used computer language BASIC, died Saturday of an apparent heart attack in Lebanon, N.H. A distinguished mathematician, Dr. Kemeny served as a research assistant to Albert Einstein while studying at Princeton University.

* John Melby, 79, an American diplomat fired during the McCarthy era for an affair with author Lillian Hellman, died Dec. 18 of a heart attack in Guelph, Ontario. The U.S. State Department investigated Mr. Melby at the height of the anti-Communist fervor in the United States in the 1950s. He was considered a security risk because of his relationship with Ms. Hellman, who was said to be a former member of the Communist Party, although she never publicly acknowledged it. She died in 1984.

* John L. Peters, 85, twice nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize for founding the World Neighbors charity in 1951, died Saturday of leukemia in Denver. The World Neighbors program, which Mr. Peters started in 1951 while a Methodist pastor in Oklahoma City, works to overcome poverty and starvation in Asia, Africa, Latin America and the Pacific islands. Mr. Peters was president until he retired in 1976. He was nominated twice for the Nobel Prize, most recently in 1992.

* Charles E. Simons, 86, an Associated Press correspondent in the 1930s and later a Texas Highway Commission chairman, died Friday of complications of diabetes in Austin.

* Maria Teresa Herrera-Uslar, 78, the Dowager Marquesa de Torre Casa and widely known as Mimi Herrera who was a society figure, philanthropist and author, died from heart failure due to complications from cancer on Saturday at the Caracas Medical Center in Venezuela.

* William C. Trueheart, 74, a former ambassador to Nigeria and deputy chief of mission in Saigon just before the American military buildup in Vietnam, died of cancer Dec. 24 at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington. As deputy chief of mission in Saigon from 1961 to 1964, the Washington resident was among the first American diplomats to raise concerns about the ability of the corrupt Diem government to survive a groundswell of public opposition, particularly when Buddhist monks led protests.

* Eddie Brown, a tap dancer who won fame as a master of rhythm tap improvisation and schooled a generation of dancers, has died at age 74 after a long battle with cancer. "In New York they had Honi Coles. In California, it was Eddie Brown," said Rusty E. Frank, who compiled an oral history of tap dancing. "He kept rhythm tap alive." Mr. Brown, who died in a Los Angeles convalescent home Monday, mesmerized audiences with his improvisation. When the band played, he would spontaneously weave intricate, rhythmically diverse steps, the way jazz musicians improvise tunes. He was born in Omaha, one of 14 children, and learned tap on street corners and from an uncle who would rap his ankles with a stick when he bungled steps. Legend has it tapper Bill "Bojangles" Robinson discovered Mr. ,, Brown, who was 16 at the time, while touring Omaha. He moved to Los Angeles in 1982 and eventually taught hundreds of students. He also toured and performed at dance conventions around the world. He received two choreographer fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and a star on San Francisco's Walk of Fame.

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.