Obituary


Disability Rights Activist Brooke Ellison Remembered as a Friend and Leader

Ellison, a disability rights activist and one of the first quadriplegic persons to attend Harvard, died on Feb. 4 in Stony Brook University Hospital in New York. She was 45. Ellison’s family announced her death and honored her “extraordinary life” in a Feb. 4 Facebook post.


Bernie Steinberg, Former Harvard Hillel Director, Remembered As ‘Tremendous’ Teacher, Listener

Late last year, Bernie Steinberg had been watching a crisis at Harvard unfold from his home in Chicago. As outrage over then-President Claudine Gay’s leadership and accusations of antisemitism on campus sparked national headlines, Steinberg —  the director of Harvard Hillel from 1993 to 2010 — decided to take action.


Charles Fried, Former U.S. Solicitor General and Longtime Harvard Law School Professor, Dies at 88

Charles A. Fried, a longtime Harvard Law School professor and renowned conservative legal scholar who served as a U.S. solicitor general under President Ronald Reagan, died on Tuesday, according to a post on X from his son-in-law.


Harvard Ed School Prof. Emeritus Robert LeVine Remembered as ‘Kind Presence’ With ‘Childlike Curiosity’

Harvard Graduate School of Education professor emeritus Robert A. LeVine was remembered by his friends, family, and colleagues as “benevolent” and “very supportive,” with a “childlike curiosity” that guided his interdisciplinary approach. He died in August at the age of 91.


Harvard Kennedy School Professor Emeritus Lewis Branscomb, ‘A Giant Among Giants,’ Dies at 96

Harvard Kennedy School emeritus professor Lewis M. Branscomb was known for his contributions to the use of science in public policy and his advancement of understanding how technology impacts society. He died on May 31 at age 96 in Redwood City, California.


Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree Jr., ‘Renaissance Lawyer’ and Staunch Civil Rights Defender, Dies at 70

Charles J. Ogletree Jr., a Harvard Law School professor emeritus internationally renowned as a civil rights scholar and litigator who advocated for equality and social justice, died on Aug. 4 at his home in Odenton, Maryland. He was 70.


History of Science Professor Everett Mendelsohn Remembered As ‘Colossus’ in His Field

Everett I. Mendelsohn, a Harvard professor emeritus known for his pioneering work studying the history of biology and the relationship between scientific progress and its social and historical contexts, died on June 6 at his home in Cambridge. He was 91.


Astronomer Owen Gingerich, Defender of Pluto and Scientist With Spirituality, Dies at 93

Upon his retirement in 2000 after a 40 year-long career, Harvard professor Owen J. Gingerich had, with astronomer David W. Latham, taught the longest-running Harvard course under continuous leadership. He died on May 28, 2023 at the age of 93.


Pentagon Papers Whistleblower Daniel Ellsberg ’52 Remembered as Nuclear Nonproliferation Advocate, Film Buff

Daniel Ellsberg ’52, a military analyst turned antiwar whistleblower who exposed government lies about the Vietnam War in 1971 by leaking a top-secret 7,000-page study of the conflict known as the Pentagon Papers, died on June 16 at his home in Kensington, California. He was 92.


Harvard Kennedy School Student Mateo Gomez Remembered as ‘Caring, Calm, and Selfless’

Mateo Gomez, a Harvard Kennedy School student in the mid-career master in public administration program and a special agent for the FBI, was born in Medellín, Colombia, and immigrated to Miami when he was 10. Friends and family remember Gomez as a fierce advocate for LGBTQ+ rights who was passionate about giving back to those around him.


Former College Dean John Bayley Fox Jr. Remembered as ‘A Defender of the Best Qualities of Harvard’

According to many, John Bayley Fox Jr. strived to make Harvard a more inclusive environment that could respond to every student’s needs. At Harvard, he held positions including assistant dean of the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard College dean, and administrative dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. He died on Nov. 27 at the age of 86.


Christopher Walsh ’65, Renowned Biochemist and Harvard Medical School Professor, Dies at 78

Christopher Walsh ’65, a renowned biochemist and Harvard Medical School professor, died on Jan. 10 at the age of 78. Throughout his career, Walsh made significant contributions in the areas of enzyme function, metabolic pathways, and antibiotic biosynthesis.


Harvard Remembers Beloved Tai Chi Instructor and Adams House Affiliate Yon Lee

Yon G. Lee coached martial arts at Harvard for more than three decades, eventually becoming the University’s chief instructor of kung fu and tai chi. A beloved affiliate of Adams House, Lee died on Jan. 6 at the age of 74.


Luke Balstad ’25 Remembered as ‘Incredibly Special,’ ‘Passionate,’ and ‘Kind’

Luke T. Balstad’s friends, family, and teachers remember him as a uniquely thoughtful, kind, and brilliant person who brightened the lives of those around him. He was passionate about self-care and helping others, hoped to become a doctor, and loved the outdoors.


Ash Carter

Ash Carter, who served as Secretary of Defense in the final two years of the Obama administration, opened military combat jobs to women and ended a ban on transgender people serving in the military.


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