Recent Obituaries
In Memoriam Archive

Peter R. Dehn ’61

January 11, 2017, in Portland, from acute myeloid leukemia.

Born in Munich, Germany, Peter fled Nazi persecution with his family in 1939, escaping to Quito, Ecuador. He received a scholarship to attend Groton School in Massachusetts and did not see his family again for many years. He enrolled at Reed, but interrupted his studies to serve in the U.S. Army. When he returned to campus, he met Dorothy Hurt ’61, and they were married in the Reed chapel in 1960.

Peter was employed as a social worker in a variety of public and private agencies. He also turned his photography hobby and Groton letterpress experience into a partnership with his wife called Dehn Graphics. Dorothy was the calligrapher, graphic designer, and typographer. In retirement, the couple raised standard poodles and certified several dogs to work as therapy animals in local hospitals and clinics. After Dorothy died in 2008, Peter kept busy with volunteer work, particularly with anything that might take advantage of his Spanish fluency. A fixture in the neighborhood where he’d lived for more than 50 years, he was always ready to talk your ears off, but also to pitch in to clean a drain or shovel a walk. He is survived by his two daughters, Natasha Dehn ’85 and Diana Wiltrud Dehn.

Appeared in Reed magazine: June 2021

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