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Remembering Friends

Judy CalderJudy Calder, University of Nevada, Reno associate professor, died Aug. 18, 2007. Judy was born Nov. 1, 1942 and had served as a faculty member at the University since 1992. She was initially hired to direct survey research for the Alan Bible Center for Applied Research. Among Judy’s noteworthy accomplishments is 15 years working with the Centers for Disease Control’s Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance Study in Nevada, as well as extensive research in family and domestic violence. Additionally, Judy forged a relationship with the State Department of Health and Human Services. She was highly respected among her students and peers for her intelligence, willingness to stand up for what she believed in and for her passion for people. She was a creative instructor, using innovative teaching methods to enhance the classroom experience. Judy received her higher education degrees from the University of California, Los Angeles: bachelor’s in English (1967), master of arts (1970) and her doctor of education degree with an emphasis in research methodology (1977).

James Lawrence Tigner, emeritus professor of history, died on March 8, 2007. He was born in Los Angeles on April 18, 1918. He left UCLA to enter the first class of Air Cadets of the U.S. Air Corps. After a short period of flying B-25 airplanes, he was selected to enter the U.S. Top-Secret Counter Intelligence School. James was then assigned to Myrtle Beach Air Force Base. He married Roberta Jean Tigner on Sept. 23, 1942, and she has been by his side ever since. At the end of his military career, he retired as a major, having received the Army Occupation Medal, Asiatic Pacific Service Medal, World War II Victory Medal, and the American Campaign Medal. He then completed his undergraduate education at Redlands University in Redlands, Calif., graduating in 1952 with distinction. The following fall, he entered Stanford University earning a master’s degree followed by a doctoral degree. He traveled with his wife to Brazil, Paraguay, Argentina, Chile, and Bolivia, where he found a small community of Ryukyuan farmers in the Santa Cruz region. James subsequently involved the Bolivian government, the United States government, the Occupation government, and the Gunto government of the Ryukyus in an immigration project for farmers to relocate to Bolivia. The community that was established recently celebrated its 50th anniversary and today, the project has three generations living in their new homes. Throughout his career, James wrote numerous articles including 101 articles published by the Encyclopedia Britannica. James first taught at Stanford University where he represented the Department of History. He also taught at the University of Oregon and at Guadalajara, a joint Stanford and University of California, Berkeley summer program on Mexican-American Relations. He later taught at the University of Nevada, Reno, where he served as chairman of the Department of History. Throughout his career, he found great joy in teaching and retired in 1992. He is survived by his loving wife, Jean. They were beloved by numerous young people including John Schoettler, and were godparents to the Boomer children, Pat, Anita, Roberta, and Diane. An avid outdoorsman, he enjoyed exploring Nevada’s vast wilderness with his dear friends, Robert Boomer and Larry Peirano. A special note of appreciation goes to the Miles Webb family of Reno. Jean Tigner also expresses her gratitude to his caregivers from the Circle of Life and Right at Home.

Helene (Lee) Montgomery ’35 (botany) died May 13, 2007, in Napa, Calif. She was 93. She was born Helene Louise Per Lee in New York City in 1914. She came West with her mother to Reno at the onset of the Great Depression. She attended the University from 1930 to 1934, where she met and later married Edward S. Montgomery ’34 (journalism), late of the San Francisco Examiner. Edward, one of the University’s six Pulitzer Prize winners, died in 1992. When her husband served two terms as the Press Club’s president in the 50s, Helene was seen regularly at the club’s storied Gang Dinners, often sharing the dais with such international luminaries as Haile Selassie, Vyacheslav Molotov and Queen Frederika of Greece. She is survived by her daughter, Diana Lavagnino; and son, Douglas; as well as eight grandchildren and five great-grandchildren. Memorial donations may be made to the Nature Conservancy.

Merle Snider ’43 (zoology) died at home on Sept. 7, 2007. Honesty, integrity, sincerity and grace are but a few of the superlative qualities of this great family man, who was loved by many and will be sorely missed. Born to Emile and Emma Snider in September 1916 in Winnemucca, where he spent his childhood. After graduating from the University of Nevada, Reno in 1943, Merle joined the Navy and served in the South Pacific, Saipan, and Okinawa. After the war, Merle had numerous occupations. He worked at KKOH-AM radio station from 1953 to 1956. He became a partner in the Electronic Distributing Corporation and president of the Musicians Union from 1959 to 1975. Merle also served as an assistant labor commissioner for the state of Nevada. He was active in many organizations: Kiwanis club, Sunrisers, chairman of the Nevada State Council of the Arts, Sierra Arts Foundation, Masonic Lodge, Shriners, and Campfire Girls. Merle also found great joy in activities such as bridge and golf. Merle was an accomplished pianist and played until the late ’80s. Merle married his beautiful bride, Glenda, in 1940. She preceded him in death in 1994. Merle is survived by his sons, Ronald, Lyle, Glen, and daughter, Merlene Cardnuto (Michael), and grandchildren, Melissa, Mathew, and Michelle, and great-grandchild, Caiden.

Patricia Marie (Traner) Boyes ’46 (history) died on Aug. 12, 2007 at her home in Lemon Grove, Calif. She was awarded the Herz Gold Medal for highest scholarship at the University and was a member of Pi Beta Phi. Patricia taught elementary school in Reno for many years before finishing her career as a high school librarian in Southern California. After her retirement, she and her husband, G.R. Boyes, traveled extensively in the United States and Mexico, making their home in Lemon Grove. She was preceded in death by her parents, former Dean of the College of Education at the University of Nevada, Reno Fred W. and Carrie Traner; her sisters Margaret Bradshaw and Helen Cooney; and two nephews, Rodger Cooney and Ted Bradshaw. Survivors include her husband, G.R. Boyes; daughter, Jan Madraso; stepdaughter, Carol Boyes; stepson, R.S. Boyes; and three grandchildren, Jim Madraso, Amanda Madraso, and Sam Boyes.

Pat BarryPatricia Ann (Fee) Barry ’50 (history) died Jan. 2, 2007 from cancer-related causes. Pat was born on Nov. 29, 1928 in Reno to Laurance and Edna Russell Fee. Pat spent most of her youth in Surprise Valley on her parents’ ranch in Fort Bidwell, Calif. Pat attended high school in Reno and graduated from the University in 1950. Pat later spent several years in Germany, where she taught English courses to enlisted men during the Korean War. Upon her return to the United States, Pat began her career as a high school teacher. The majority of her teaching career and her final teaching position were at Surprise Valley High School in Cedarville, Calif. She was beloved by her students for her variety of education and her down-to-earth good humor. Pat was also a prolific writer. She wrote numerous articles for the Modoc County Historical Journal, Range Magazine and for numerous newspapers. She loved all things related to ranching, but she was most drawn to horses, caring for, training and riding them. Without a doubt, Pat's greatest love was her family and friends. In recent correspondence to one of her students Pat wrote, “At the end of the day, or at least getting into the afternoon, my greatest accomplishment is having my sons to admire and love. Secondly, my friends. So be it. Life does not rewind.” Pat had great friends and her family is immensely grateful for the generosity and love bestowed upon her by these wonderful people. Pat is survived by her brother, Jim Fee and his wife Susie; her son Ernest, James Givan and his family, Acinda, Fernando, Elizabeth and Christian; her son James L. Olmsted and his son, Sage Fox. Also surviving Pat are her nephews and nieces, Will Cahill and wife, Susie; Hugh Cahill and wife, Lesa; Joe Cahill and wife, Chandra; Frank Cahill and wife, Cynthia; Tom Fee and wife, Alyssa; Shannon May and husband, Matt; Katie Fee; Mary Gates and husband, Byron; grandnephews and grandnieces including James, Jackie, Bill, Donna, Terry, Carley and Rachel Cahill; Savannah, Bailey, Jake and Grace Fee; Jackie, Jeffery, Christopher and Sam May; Taylor and Justin Ritchie; Caralina and Amanda Gates. Pat was preceded in death by her parents, Laurance and Edna Fee, her sister and brother-in-law, Martha and Terry Cahill, and husband, Nick Barry.

Dixie WestergardDixie (Olean) Westergard ’56 (physical education) died Sept. 21, 2007. Dixie was born to Leon and Thelma Karr on June 4, 1935 in Rule, Texas. She spent her early years in Los Angeles and Bakersfield, Calif. and her teen years in Elko and Lovelock, Nev. Dixie completed high school in Lovelock, where she met her future husband, Roland Westergard ’56 (civil engineering), and their many cherished life-long friends. Dixie continued at the University of Nevada, Reno where she was member of Delta Delta Delta sorority, participated in women’s athletics and was active in numerous student organizations. Dixie was a top ten woman awardee as a senior. Dixie and Roland married in December 1956. Since 1958, Dixie and Roland have made their home in Carson City. Dixie’s contributions through the years were many, especially the energy she shared with her children. She was always willing to serve as room mother, team mom and “taxi driver” as she listened, laughed and loved with her children, grandchildren and their friends. She served as a vacation Bible school teacher and Campfire leader. Dixie’s gift for teaching shined through all she did. She was an active member of Nevada Women’s History group and was inducted into the Nevada Women’s History Roll of Honor in 2002. Dixie’s loves included supporting her children and grandchildren’s activities, enjoying holidays with family, following politics, traveling with her husband, attending University functions, reading/researching, writing, giving presentations on her works, and spending time at Lake Tahoe. Dixie’s family members include husband, Roland Westergard; daughters Laurie Gray (Paul), Tricia Wentz (Mike); son, Todd Westergard (Tammy), and daughter Wendy Nason (Dan). Grandchildren include Dustin and Tyler Gray; Michael, Kyle, Shannon, Trevor and Tawnie Wentz; Brooks, Cloe and Keaton Westergard; and Anna and Cole Nason, and great grandchild Kylee Wentz.
Dixie is also survived by her mother, Thelma Sturges, and sister, Bobbie Jeanne Aufdermaur; brother Charles “Butch” Sturges (San Diego); and numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. Preceding her in death were Robert and Waylon Sturges.

Thomas F. Ormachea ’68 (economics) died on April 1, 2007. Tom was born July 31, 1934 in Fallon, Nev. His father, Thomas Ormachea, left a Basque province of Spain and came to Austin, Nev. His mother was the former Margaruite Kallenbach. The family settled on a ranch outside of Fallon in the 1930’s where Tom and his five sisters were raised. He began his schooling in a one-room ranch school and graduated from Churchill County High School in 1951. When he was young, he was a camp tender for the family sheep ranch, bringing food and supplies by mule and horseback to the herders in the outlying camps. At the age of 18, he was with the elite Army 187th Airborne Regimental Combat Team and received his infantry badge in Korea. After the war, he was an honor guard at a pentagon near Yokohama, Japan. When he returned to Nevada he spent time in Fallon, working on the ranch and sheepherding in the Clan Alpine Mountain Range. He began the study of economics at the University of Nevada in 1956. During his time at the University, he was a member of the Wolf Pack boxing team and the Sundowners. After working for Harrah’s, his background in economics led him to a position as a management analyst for the State of Nevada and then several years with the Nevada Gaming Board. He opened Ormachea’s Dinner House in 1987. The popular restaurant remains a landmark in Winnemucca. Tom was a smart, high-spirited man with a radiant smile, a quick wit and many friends throughout the state. He was never afraid to travel the rough roads of life. He braved many changes he had to make while living with a progressively crippling and painful disorder for more than 18 years. His parents, Thomas and Margaruite Ormachea, and his sister, Dolores, preceded him in death. He is survived by his sisters, Marie, Margaret, Julia and Lois. It is encouraged that expressions of sympathy take the form of contributions to the Thomas F. Ormachea Scholarship Fund, c/o P.O. Box 1190, Winnemucca, NV 89446.

Alanah Jean Woody ’93 (anthropology) ’96MA (anthropology) died on July 19, 2007. She was surrounded by her family throughout her hospitalization. Alanah was born on March 24, 1956 in Modesto, Calif. to H. Eugene Woody and Lola Woody. Alanah was a vibrant, energetic woman who transformed the lives of those fortunate enough to have known her. Famed for her wit, compassion, good humor, and drive, she was a co-founder of the Nevada Rock Art Foundation and its first executive director. Alanah’s childhood years were spent traveling to far away places with her brothers, Duane and Dwight, and her mother, Lola, so that they could be by her father’s side as he worked as a tunnel engineer. These childhood travels stimulated a latent interest in other cultures that would ultimately be expressed in her passion for anthropology. As a young woman, Alanah helped care for her mother during battles with a serious illness. Alanah was very close to her mother, and her passing in 2001 affected her greatly. Alanah studied anthropology at the University of Nevada, Reno and gained a doctorate in 2001 from the University of Southampton in England. It was at Southampton that she met her future husband, Angus, also an archaeologist. Alanah specialized in the archaeology of rock art and was a well-known researcher in the field with numerous professional publications and magazine articles about her. Alanah was a tireless advocate for the protection of the rock art of the Desert West. Alanah’s interest in anthropology expressed her deep-rooted love and concern for people. Although Alanah led a full and fulfilling professional life, her family life was always her greatest love. She was happily married to Angus R. Quinlan and was very proud of the young man that her son, Chris, has become and she loved his girlfriend, Shanae. Alanah is survived by her husband, Angus R. Quinlan; son, Christopher Woody; father, Gene Woody; brothers, Duane L. Woody and Dwight J. Woody, and sister-in-law, Ginny Woody. Her family greatly mourns her passing, but finds some small consolation in that she packed into her life enough for 10 lifetimes. Alanah is an irreplaceable lynchpin around which family, friends, and colleagues revolve, all bound to one another by this incredible woman.

Steven Thomas Stefani ’02 (animal science) died in Afghanistan Oct. 4, 2007 in an explosion that struck his convoy near Ghazni. Tom served as a U.S. Department of Agriculture provincial reconstruction team adviser in Ghazni, Afghanistan, since March 13, 2007. Tom was developing and implementing projects to help Afghanis in the Ghazni province. He worked directly with the province’s director of agriculture to create a reconstruction plan that included a poultry-rearing facility, starting a cold storage facility for farmers to store their commodities, as well as other agricultural advancements. Tom’s service was a voluntary detail with his job as a rangeland management specialist for the U.S. Forest Service. Tom worked with permittees to balance the needs of livestock with the rangelands in the Wells office. Tom is survived by his father, Steven Stefani; his mother, Barbara Stefani; two brothers, Dan, who attends the University, and Jon; and his girlfriend of five years, Jessica Dhaemers.

Derek JensenDerek “DJ” Kyle Jensen ’06 (public health), was fatally wounded Oct. 28, 2007 in Reno at the age of 23. He was born in Sparks, Nev. April 26, 1984. Raised and educated in Sparks, he attended Reed High School and fully enveloped himself in athletics, being part of the baseball and football team, as well as his education. After his graduation from Reed High School in 2002, he attended the University of Nevada, Reno, studying for a public health degree. During his studies at the University, he was accepted into the Tau Kappa Epsilon fraternity as the Sergeant of Arms, and ultimately became the president his third year as a member. He was employed at Stantec Engineering for almost two years at the time of his passing. He is survived by his parents, Scott and Virginia Jensen, his brother, Tyler Jensen, along with other loving family members and friends. In lieu of flowers, his family asks donations be made to the Derek Jensen Memorial Scholarship Fund through Sierra Pacific Federal Credit Union. Checks may be sent to P.O. Box 10100 Suite 15, Reno NV 89520.

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