In Memoriam

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Lenard John Mansholt ’51

Lenard J. Mansholt ’51, April 7, 2003, from heart complications, in Washington. Lenard’s education in a Kansas farming community was considered complete following the eighth grade, but after serving in the U.S. Navy in World War II, he used the G.I. Bill to complete an accelerated high school program in Seattle in 11 months. At the encouragement of an instructor in the program, Lenard applied to Reed, and studied for four years with a focus in economics. He worked during the academic year and sold the Encyclopedia Britannica door-to-door in the summers. After leaving Reed, he went to work for Pay & Save Drugs and Marketime (later Fred Meyer) in Washington, and was a member and business agent with U.F.C.W. Locals 330 and 1001. Lenard kept a focus on political activism and economy throughout his lifetime. His purview on politics and big business initiated his campaign for a congressional seat that he never expected to win, but which allowed him to voice his views on local and national government. "If you don’t discuss with those who disagree," he stated, "you don’t know the weaknesses in your own argument." In retirement, he and his wife, Marjorie, enjoyed extensive travel throughout the U.S. in their motorhome. Joseph M. Hardman ’51 wrote that Lenard was "one of Reed’s real, unheralded success stories . . . He was a stout-hearted and certified member of the greatest generation whose life and contributions reflect great credit not only upon him but also his alma mater." Lenard is survived by his wife, his brother, and three sisters.

Appeared in Reed magazine: August 2003

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