In Memoriam

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Richard Gene Long ’52

A picture of Richard Long

Richard Gene Long ’52, December 21, 2009, at the Hospice of the Valley in Peoria, Arizona, following a lengthy illness. Richard earned a BA from Reed and a PhD from the University of Washington in mathematics. He and Shirley Sawtell ’53 were married in 1953. Richard's first appointment was at Wesleyan University in Connecticut in 1957. For four years, he worked in educational filmmaking for the Math Association of America. In 1969, he joined the mathematics department at Lawrence University in Wisconsin. He served as chair of the department for many years, developed “math anxiety” workshops on campus and in the wider community, and also helped found Lawrence's computer science program. He retired in 1993. Richard's marriage to Gretchen Lutey began in 1981. They spent summers in Michigan and winters in Arizona. In retirement, Richard devoted time to a variety of interests, including gem-cutting, pottery, genealogy, golf, bow-hunting, and woodworking. From public obituaries, we learned that Richard was known for his extraordinary ability to connect with diverse personalities and nontraditional learners. He was an unassuming, gentle, and generous man, and a lifelong learner. Survivors include his wife; two sons and two daughters; seven grandchildren; and two brothers.

Appeared in Reed magazine: June 2010

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