HomeAlumni NewsFebruary 24, 2014

February 24, 2014

Two members of the Deep Springs class of 1945 passed away recently.

Norris Smith DS’45 died on Feb. 4, 2014 in Wallingford, Connecticut. He was 84 years old. “Norrey” was born in San Francisco in July, 1929 and grew up in Palo Alto. He left the Palo Alto High School at the age of 16 to study at Deep Springs College. After two years, he transferred with a scholarship to Cornell University, graduating 1951 with a B.A. in Government and Cultural Anthropology. When the Korean War began, Norris joined the Air Force and was assigned to Chinese language study. He was a Chinese interpreter during the peace negotiations at Panmunjom in 1952-53. He received an honorable discharge in 1954 and with a grant from the Ford Foundation went on to complete a master’s degree in East Asian studies at Harvard.

Norris joined the U.S. Foreign Service and for 10 years held various posts in East Asia, including service in Laos, Viet Nam and Thailand. He returned to Washington D.C., to study Japanese and subsequently spent five years in Tokyo, where he was responsible for educational exchanges, a network of libraries, and other cultural programs. He was then a student at the National War College in Washington, D.C. Norris spoke three foreign languages, Chinese, Japanese and French. Later, in Beijing, he was Minister Counselor for press and cultural affairs. He helped to revive the educational and artistic and commercial relations that were suspended in the 1950’s. In 1971, Norris left the Foreign Service and joined the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory where he was responsible for public relations and worked as spokesman and senior editor for the lab’s news bureau. He later collaborated with Sidney Crain in 1987 to author a history titled, “The Supercomputing Era”. He resigned from Lawrence Livermore Lab to found and edit a new magazine, Super Computing Review. In 1989, Norris began writing full time about computers and the Internet. He retired in 2005 to pursue personal writing interests.

Buffalo, New York native Newton Garver DS’45 died on Feb. 8, 2014 after a long illness at his home in East Concord, New York. He was 83. Newt received an A.B. from Swarthmore, a B.Phil. from Oxford, and PhD. in Philosophy from Cornell. A member of Telluride Association, he served for three years on the board of directors in the late 1950s. He began his academic career as an instructor of English at the National College of Choueifat, Lebanon in 1954. Following stints as an instructor at Cornell and University of Minnesota, Newt joined the faculty at University of Buffalo in 1961, where he would teach for over 35 years. He was Professor of Philosophy, specializing in the study of ethics & policy, philosophy of language, Wittgenstein, and peace & conflict. He was appointed a SUNY Distinguished Service Professor in 1991.

He devoted his life to his beliefs in social justice, sometimes taking unpopular stands. In the early 1960s he was a co-founder of “Citizens Council on Human Relations” advocating racial integration and equality. As a young UB professor in 1964, he risked dismissal when he joined five other colleagues in refusing to sign a loyalty oath regarding what he would teach about the government. He became an active opponent of the Vietnam War, both through academic committees and also through his religious affiliations as a Quaker in the New York Friends. He remained active both socially and intellectually until very late in life. In his retirement, he worked on behalf of Bolivian Quakers, establishing an education fund to provide school supplies and resources to the impoverished community. He visited Bolivia multiple times in direct support of the effort. His writings and personal pursuits can be found at his website www.newtongarver.com.