Deaths Elsewhere

Deaths Elsewhere

February 16, 2003

Walt Rostow, 86, an economic historian who became one of the principal architects and passionate defenders of the Vietnam War as an adviser to Presidents John F. Kennedy and Lyndon B. Johnson, died Thursday night at a hospital in Austin, Texas, where he lived.

The son of a socialist immigrant, Mr. Rostow graduated from Yale at 19, won a Rhodes scholarship, served as a major in the Army's covert Office of Strategic Services in World War II, then pursued a brilliant career as a scholar of economic modernization and an adviser to politicians.

But it was his relentless support of American military intervention in Southeast Asia, first in the Kennedy administration and then as Johnson's national security adviser at the height of the Vietnam War, that marked him for life.

"He became the president's national security adviser at a time when criticism and opposition to the war were beginning to crystallize, and he eventually served the purpose of shielding the president from criticism and from reality," wrote David Halberstam in The Best and the Brightest, his 1972 study of the war's origins.

Dr. Landrum B. Shettles, 93, an early developer of in-vitro fertilization techniques, died on Feb. 6 in St. Petersburg, Fla.

Jack Maher, 78, who served more than three decades as publisher of jazz magazine Down Beat, died Friday at a hospital in suburban Chicago.

Walter L. Pforzheimer, 88, one of the founding fathers of the Central Intelligence Agency and the creator of its historical archives, died Monday at his home in Washington.

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