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Originally published February 1, 2014 at 3:53 PM | Page modified February 1, 2014 at 4:43 PM

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The week’s passages

A roundup of notable obituaries from the week ending Feb. 1.


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Debra Friedman, 58, chancellor of the University of Washington, Tacoma, who worked to turn the campus into a model of urban education, died last Sunday of lung cancer.

Vera Ing, 73, a political activist and patron of the arts who was also a leader in the development of Seattle’s Chinatown International District, died Jan. 18 of ovarian cancer.

Gladys Rubinstein, 92, a generous benefactor to the arts in Seattle and to many other civic causes, died last Sunday at her home in Rancho Mirage, Calif.

Pete Seeger, 94, the singer, folk-song collector and songwriter who spearheaded an American folk revival and spent a long career championing folk music as both a vital heritage and a catalyst for social change, died Monday in New York City.

José Emilio Pacheco, 74, a Mexican poet and author who achieved renown throughout the Spanish-speaking world with highly literate poems, essays and novels, died in Mexico City last Sunday, after falling and hitting his head.

Irving Milchberg, 86, who as a plucky Jewish street urchin escaped transport to concentration camps three times and sold cigarettes to Nazis in the heart of occupied Warsaw, Poland, while smuggling guns and food to resistance fighters, died last Sunday in Toronto.

John R. Huizenga, 92, a physicist who helped build the world’s first atomic bomb, solve dozens of atomic riddles and debunk claims that scientists in Utah had achieved nuclear fusion in a jar of water, died Jan. 25 in San Diego.

Anna Gordy Gaye, 92, a crucial force in Motown’s rise, older sister of Motown founder Barry Gordy and an ex-wife of Marvin Gaye, died of natural causes Friday in Los Angeles.

Tom Gola, 81, the Hall of Famer who led La Salle to the 1954 NCAA title, still holds the Division I record for career rebounds and helped the Philadelphia Warriors win the 1956 NBA championship, died last Sunday in Meadowbrook, Pa. No cause was announced.

Pete Burns, 85, a former professional-rodeo cowboy and nationally known college-rodeo coach who owned one of the most intractable bucking bulls of the 20th century, died last Sunday at his home in Laramie, Wyo. No cause was announced.

Morrie Turner, 90, the first African-American comic-strip artist whose work (“Wee Pals”) was widely syndicated in mainstream newspapers, died Jan. 25 in Sacramento, Calif.

Blas Piñar, 95, a Spanish far-right politician who voiced support for Gen. Francisco Franco’s military dictatorship after the introduction of democracy and was elected to the Spanish Parliament, died Tuesday in Madrid.

Eric Lawson, 72, the ruggedly handsome actor and heavy smoker who for three years was the Marlboro Man in cigarette ads, died of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease Jan. 10 in San Luis Obispo, Calif.

Richard Grossman, 92, the book publisher who helped a young Ralph Nader put out his car-safety exposé, changing national safety standards and jump-starting the modern consumer movement, died Monday of leukemia in Salisbury, Conn.



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