Other Notable Deaths


August 03, 2006

Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, 96, a key figure in the Roman Catholic Church's efforts to improve relations with other Christians and Jews, died Tuesday. He was known at the Vatican as "The Flying Dutchman" for his travels promoting Christian unity.

As president of the Vatican's Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, Cardinal Willebrands long sought to improve troubled relations between the faiths. He also was mentioned as a possible candidate for the papacy at the two conclaves of 1978.

In the 1980s, he called for more Jewish teachers at Catholic theological institutes to expand the study of Judaism.

He was named president of the Vatican's Secretariat for Promoting Christian Unity in 1969 and held the post for 20 years. The secretariat was renamed the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity by Pope John Paul II in 1988.

Anthony Cave Brown, 77, a British journalist who turned to exploring the workings of espionage and the development of the atomic bomb, died July 14 at a nursing home in Warrenton, Va.

As a writer, Mr. Cave Brown was a witness to history who was not averse to drinking with his famous subjects, including Kim Philby, the British spy who became a Soviet agent.

He covered the Hungarian revolt against communism and the Algerian war for independence. In 1959, after visiting Boris Pasternak at his Russian dacha, he smuggled a poem by the Nobel laureate out of the Soviet Union and had it published in London's Daily Mail. He claimed that Pasternak had given him a second poem but that he lost it during a night of revelry in Berlin.

He rode aboard the first nuclear-powered submarine and visited the South Pole. He was based in Paris and later in Beirut, where he sometimes met Philby for martinis before the double agent was unmasked and fled to Moscow in 1963.

In the mid-1970s, he found 80 volumes on the development of the atomic bomb on the 13th floor of the National Archives. The documents had just been declassified and left in a rickety wooden cart. He worked with Charles B. McDonald to distill the material into a 788-page history, The Secret History of the Atomic Bomb.

Dr. Vincent P. Dole, 93, whose research in the 1960s established that methadone could be used to treat heroin addiction, died Tuesday in New York City.

A clinician at the Rockefeller University, Dr. Dole studied a range of human biological processes. But it was his pioneering work with methadone that earned the highest accolades. In 1964, he and research partner Dr. Marie Nyswander experimented with shifting addicts from crippling drugs like heroin and morphine to methadone, a synthetic drug far less damaging to the body.

At the time, methadone was known predominantly as a painkiller. First synthesized in the late 1930s, it wasn't widely used because it was highly addictive. They noted, however, that methadone didn't disable users like heroin or morphine. Methadone satisfied the physical cravings of addiction but didn't make users high or subject them to violent mood swings.

Their studies suggested that addicts could be put on "maintenance" doses of methadone - meaning they would remain physically dependent on the drug but be able to conduct otherwise normal lives. Those findings sparked the creation of hundreds of methadone programs worldwide.

Jules Hirsch, a professor emeritus at Rockefeller who worked with Dr. Dole for nearly 50 years, said the research also fostered thinking that drug addiction should be treated as a medical problem, rather than a purely moral one.

Daniel Lev, 72, a leading scholar on Indonesia and longtime University of Washington professor, died of lung cancer Saturday.

He worked closely with scholars, journalists, reformers and the military to improve the Indonesian legal system and further human rights there. He embraced the language and culture of Indonesia. Many of his research materials are in the native language.

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