Remembrances is a page to read memorials of Northwestern community members submitted by their family or peers. Visit In Memoriam to read featured obituaries of Northwestern alumni, faculty and staff. Please send obituaries to email@example.com.
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Roy Earl Howarth ’60 MA, ’71 PhD, Gilbert, Ariz., April 21, 2021, age 89.
Howarth was born in Dartmouth, Mass., to Roy and Elsie Howarth.
After high school, Roy enlisted in the U.S. Navy and served on the USS Oriskany (Mighty “O”) during the Korean War. Following his service, he gained inspiration from his wife, Lissette, to pursue a career in teaching while an undergraduate.
Roy became a dedicated educator at Maine East High School in Illinois. He taught courses at all levels of English literature and composition and earned his master’s and doctoral degrees at Northwestern. He was an inspiring teacher and an encouraging mentor to faculty while chair of the English department at Maine East.
In his personal life, Roy’s favorite ways to pass the time included golfing, gardening, reading and travel.
Beloved by his family, he is survived by his wife of 70 years, Lissette Arnold Howarth; his daughter and son-in-law, Jennifer and Richard King; and his brother and sister-in-law, Donald and Barbara Howarth.
Christine Victoria Shim Harden ’97
Oct. 17, 1975 – Jan. 24, 2021
With heavy hearts, the Shim and Harden families regret to announce the passing of our beloved Christine Victoria Shim Harden. Her generosity and kindness will be deeply missed.
Christine was a dear wife, daughter, sister, mentor and friend. She was eternally thoughtful, never failing to send a birthday or anniversary card to those she loved. She was loyal and supportive and loved bringing people together.
Christine attended high school at Phillips Exeter Academy (class of 1993), where she had continued to be an active alumna, serving as a class correspondent. She graduated cum laude from Northwestern University (class of 1997), where she was a member of the sorority Alphi Phi. She went to the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia (class of 2004), where she most recently served as a class agent.
Christine enjoyed running, and completed numerous marathons in Chicago, Boston, New York City, London and Bermuda. She also competed in triathlons and loved downhill skiing. She was an accomplished pianist, having trained at the Juilliard pre-college program in NYC.
Christine will be forever remembered and loved by her husband, Greg Harden, her parents, Cynthia and John Shim, and her sisters, Margaret Shim Perra and Jean Shim Yun. She leaves behind five nephews and one niece. She also leaves behind countless friends and will truly be missed by all who had the fortune to have her in their lives.
James A. Kohlstedt ’71, 71, of La Grange, Ill., born June 1, 1949, in Evanston; died peacefully Oct. 10, 2020, surrounded by family.
Jim grew up in Evanston and attended Evanston Township High School. Jim’s father, August Kohlstedt, was the lead maintenance engineer in Northwestern’s Technical Institute building in the 1950s. That experience exposed Jim to the school and handiwork at a young age. He received his bachelor’s degree in political science from Northwestern, where he was president of the Lambda Chi Alpha fraternity. He received his JD and MBA from Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, where he met and married Pat, his wife of 43 years.
Jim loved traveling (all seven continents!), practicing law, hiking, skiing in Colorado and Canada as “Jake” and “Hans,” telling jokes, and spending time with family and friends. He was skilled in helping others and making space for the occasional joke while practicing commercial real estate, transaction and estate planning law. He was a mentor and friend to many, and a proud third-generation school board member for 20 years at Lyons Township High School in La Grange, Ill. Jim took exceptional pride in his three children and two children-in-law who received degrees from Northwestern, though it may have just been an excuse to attend more Wildcat football games and tailgates as a longtime season ticket holder. Jim’s greatest joy in life was his grandchildren, whose lives he enriched immensely.
He is survived by his wife Pat; children Katie Kohlstedt '01 (and Francisco), Matt Kohlstedt '02 (and Sarah), Lindsey Kohlstedt Meyer (and Devin Meyer '13 MBA) and Kevin Kohlstedt '17 MBA, '17 MS (and Karly); grandchildren Kai and Teo Portillo Kohlstedt, Benjamin and Zoe Kohlstedt, William, Luke and Emily Meyer, and Avery Kohlstedt; and ski chairlift jokes awaiting punchlines.
He was preceded in death by his parents, August and Deloris Weichelt Kohlstedt.
Jim tried his best and encouraged others to do the same.
A GREAT BROADCASTER, A TRUE FRIEND AND A FOUR-TIME “WORLD SERIES” CHAMP
Jamie Samuelsen ’93 was a popular sports radio show host in Detroit who died Aug. 1 of colon cancer at age 48. Raised in California, Jamie adopted the Motor City as his hometown. And from the moment he publicly announced his diagnosis on his morning-drive talk show to the day he passed, the outpouring of love and admiration for Jamie in the Detroit market was remarkable. The president of the Detroit Lions called his morning talk show. The Detroit Tigers had a moment of silence for him before a game. Everyone remarked on how tragic it was to lose such a genuine, kind and funny person — especially at such a young age, and with a beloved wife and three beautiful kids.
Jamie made it his mission to encourage everyone age 45 or older to get a colonoscopy. He wanted something good to come out of his misfortune.
During his time at Northwestern, Jamie was a member of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity. The loss is hitting his fellow Fiji’s hard, but they are glad for all the times they were able to see Jamie after leaving Northwestern. Jamie was good about that — he kept up with his college friends and visited campus almost every year. He loved to end conversations with Coach Fitzgerald’s catch phrase: “Go ’Cats!”
With another group of college friends, Jamie got together for a weekend to watch ‘Cats football and play a card tournament every year. It was an excuse to get together, laugh and remember those great college years — something that Jamie’s passing should remind all of us to make a point of doing. The card game — little known outside Wisconsin and parts of Germany — is called Sheepshead. And with tongue in cheek these six NU grads called their closed-door tournament the World Series of Sheepshead. Jamie was a four-time champ. Despite the wins he racked up, Jamie’s friends liked to rib him, saying that he wasn’t much of a card player, he was just lucky.
It’s true. Jamie Samuelson was lucky in all things except one. His friends — in California and Detroit, as well as the Northwestern community — were luckier still.
Photo: From left, Max Heerman ’93, ’96 JD; Ameet Sachdev ’93; Joe Curry ’93; Scott Dummler ’93; Craig Wagner ’93; and Jamie Samuelsen ’93
David Alan Pituch '98 DMA, 72, of Evanston passed away June 23, 2020, of health complications after a long battle with the bone marrow disorder MDS and leukemia. A celebrated saxophonist, author and devoted educator, he studied music at the Baldwin and Wallace College Conservatory, the University of Colorado Boulder and Northwestern University.
After serving in the North American Aerospace Defense Command U.S. Army band, he earned his master’s degree at CU Boulder and went on to win a Fulbright grant to research Polish music at the Chopin Academy in Warsaw, Poland. There, he established the academy’s first program in classical saxophone studies and wrote a comprehensive book on the history of the saxophone, while playing concerts across Europe and in the United States.
He played as a soloist with the Boston Pops, the Berlin Philharmonic, the Danish Radio Orchestra and the Warsaw Philharmonic, among others. He also recorded two solo albums on the PWM and ProViva labels and was a contributor to many other recordings. His playing inspired avant-garde composers to write and dedicate numerous pieces to him. After moving back to the United States and earning his doctorate from Northwestern University, he taught at Northwestern, DePaul University and Columbia College of Missouri, both online and in-person.
A loving husband, Pituch met his wife Elzbieta in Warsaw. They married in 1981 and had two sons, Mark and Justin. David was a particularly dedicated father, avid cook and opera aficionado. He loved spending time outdoors kayaking, hiking, cycling or simply going for a nice drive. Pituch is preceded in death by his brothers Chuck and Danny, as well as his sister Annette. He is survived by his wife; sons; brother Tom; sisters Caroline and Marcia; and many nieces, nephews and cousins.
Edward Nanas ’53, 88, former newsman, freelance writer and corporate executive, died March 24, 2020, in Reston, Va.
Nanas had a long communications career that included service as a U.S. Navy public information officer, magazine editor at Fawcett Publications in New York City, newspaper reporter and editor at Fairchild Publications, and director of communications at IBM. He pioneered the coverage of news about computers in the late 1950s and early 1960s when the then so-called "giant brains" first were coming on the scene.
In 1960, at Electronic News, a Fairchild weekly, he conceived and edited what is believed to be the first regular newspaper business and technology coverage of computer developments. As part of that coverage, he conducted interviews with legendary computer hardware and programming visionaries, including J. Presper Eckert, co-inventor of the Univac computer, and Rear Adm. Grace Murray Hopper, co-inventor of the COBOL programming language.
As a freelance writer in the 1960s, his action-adventure and technology articles appeared in many national magazines. In 1964 he joined IBM Corporation and served in various communications management posts in the United States and Asia/Pacific area. He retired as director of communications in 1989.
During the 1970s and early 1980s, Nanas often acted as IBM's spokesperson on matters relating to the several antitrust suits then pending against the company, including US v. IBM. That action was dropped by the Department of Justice as being “without merit” in 1982 after 13 years in litigation.
Following his IBM career, Nanas returned to writing articles and executive speeches on assignment from major corporations. He also provided communications and public affairs consulting and taught at colleges in New York and Santa Fe, N.M.
Born in New York City on March 1, 1932, he received a B.S. degree from Northwestern University and an M.A. from New York University. He was an associate member of the Foreign Correspondents Club of Japan. Over the years, Nanas has resided in Wilton, Conn., Santa Fe, New York City, Tokyo and finally in Northern Virginia.
His wife of 59 years, Rochelle, passed away in 2015. She danced with American Ballet Theatre in the 1950s. He is survived by their two children, Sally Nanas of Sterling, Va., and Phillip Nanas of Portland, Ore., and a grandson, Steven Androphy.
A private burial took place at Quantico National Cemetery.
Great Expectations: A Guru's Life Lessons for His Chelas
John R. McLane, professor emeritus of South Asian history at Northwestern University, passed away on Jan. 24, 2020. This essay by Anupama R. Oza and Rajesh C. Oza, honors a scholar’s passion for India and a teacher’s commitment to his students.
If tenure-track academics are so blessed, they will move through three career stages: assistant professor, associate professor, professor. We like to think of this as striving, arriving, thriving.
Professor McLane, known to family, friends, colleagues and students as Jock, experienced all three stages in more than half a century at Northwestern. After his undergraduate studies at Harvard (which included a three-month trip to India in the fall of his junior year), in 1961 Jock earned his doctorate in South Asian history at the University of London’s School of Oriental and African Studies; at the SOAS, Jock studied with A.L. Basham, a professor who taught many budding historians and is perhaps best known for having written the classic introductory text The Wonder that Was India.
As a young man still in his mid-20s, Jock came to Evanston with his wife and their two children to teach history of the Indian subcontinent. He was at the very forefront of American scholars introducing India into undergraduate education. Indeed, only a decade before Jock came to Northwestern as an assistant professor striving to research and teach about the vast area called South Asia, the entire field of “Area Studies” was just beginning to take shape in the United States.
In the middle of the 20th century, the Ford Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York and, subsequently, the National Defense Education Act funded more than 125 university-based area-studies units known as National Resource Center programs. In the Midwest, much of this funding went to the University of Chicago, which established its South Asia Language and Area Center (SALAC) as the preeminent locus of scholars concentrating on Indian civilization.
It was within this context of America’s outward gaze toward India and other Asian nations that Jock arrived as an associate professor and thrived as a full professor at Northwestern. During this time, he wrote Indian Nationalism and the Early Congress in 1977, which won the Watamull Prize awarded by the American Historical Association, and Land and Local Kingship in Eighteenth Century Bengal in 1993.
While Jock can surely be honored for having progressed through the three stages of professorship (culminating in being distinguished as professor emeritus), we best remember him for a different tripartite aspect of his life cycle at Northwestern: to be sure as a teacher across generations, but also as a champion of non-Western cultures and as a lifelong mentor encouraging lives well lived. It is in these roles that Jock served as a guru to so many of his chelas, a guide who imparted knowledge to his disciples through enduring relationships.
Teacher Across Generations
Jock taught both of us — the father and daughter authors of this memoriam: Rajesh in 1978 and Anupama (who goes by “Anu”) in 2005. Much changed across that quarter of a century. To be sure, History 385 remained History of Modern India, but Professor McLane evolved his curriculum to reflect the significant arrival of new voices from the subcontinent; as his chelas changed, the guru learned from them and updated his teaching accordingly.
When Rajesh took History 385, the reading list included Stanley Wolpert’s A New History of India, Rudyard Kipling’s Kim and Larry Collins and Dominique Lapierre’s Freedom at Midnight (all of which were sourced at the Great Expectations bookstore on Foster Street, quietly suggesting the great expectations Professor McLane had of his students). By the time Anu took the “same” course, the reading list had expanded to include writing by Tapan Basu, Pradip Datta, Sumit Sarkar, Tanika Sarkar and Sambuddha Sen. You’ll surely note that there is a reclaiming of history at work here: Western authors transformed into Indian authors. This is what scholars of subaltern studies call giving voice to the subject (or in India’s case under British imperialism, giving voice to the subjected peoples). Along with an evolution in whose perspective students read (Indian creators), the mediums (film, interviews) allowed for many more Indian voices to be shared as evidenced by Professor McLane’s use of Anand Patwardhan's documentary film “In the Name of God/Ram ke Naam.”
Beyond the pedagogy of the classroom, Jock became more accessible; in part this had to do with the guru’s own evolution as a teacher; but it also resulted from the chelas finding their own voice on a more democratized campus. Perhaps a couple of anecdotes will bring life to this change.
In the spring of 1978, while still a freshman, Rajesh reached for the stars and took Professor McLane’s class that was designed for juniors and seniors. He was distraught in discovering that he knew so little about the history of the country of his birth; and he was taken aback by the intellectual acuity of the dozen or so older students (all non-Indians) who shared the classroom in Harris Hall. But most of all, Rajesh was intimidated by the bearded professor with his Harvard and University of London pedigree; this professor had high expectations, and Rajesh’s midterm blue-book suggested that he was barely keeping up. Suddenly Rajesh had the flu and a dental problem. Given that his family could not afford dental care, he went to the free clinic at Northwestern’s School of Dentistry (subsequently closed in 1998) and learned from the dental students that he had periodontitis; to address this serious gum disease, Rajesh’s root canal treatment required that he make weekly trips downtown at the same time as Professor McLane’s class. Rather than explain his dilemma, Rajesh, for the first and last time, cut class. One day, while playing basketball in Blomquist Gym, Rajesh saw Professor McLane shooting hoops. The chela tried to avoid making eye contact with the guru, but the guru saw his chela and inquired about the absenteeism. With dental treatment completed, Rajesh was back in Harris Hall and made a modest comeback on the final exam.
Champion of Non-Western Cultures
Anu first met Professor McLane in her first-year dormitory, the International Studies Residential College (ISRC), where he had served as its first master in the 1980s. Student life outside the classroom was a cause that was close to Professor McLane’s heart. As a founder of the Residential College system, he believed that interaction between students and faculty was part of a robust college education; indeed, if the Northwestern University Press were to publish an illustrated dictionary, perhaps “collegial” would have a photo of Jock McLane, eyes twinkling with a hint of intellectual collaboration and shared merriment.
For many years, Professor McLane championed a global outlook on campus. He had a solid relationship not only with his students, but also with the University’s presidents, provosts and deans of the College of Arts and Science. While he was not successful in advocating for a substantial change to the curriculum that would have required that all students take one course on a non-Western civilization, he never stopped looking for ways to expand the worldview of Northwestern administrators and students.
By the time Anu took History 385, she had already developed relationships with Professor McLane and many other students at the ISRC and across campus who believed that an educated mind is an open mind. In Anu’s version of the History of Modern India, the classroom seated dozens of students from across the world who challenged each other and Professor McLane to consider and reconsider the reading and writing of Indian history.
It was this type of dialectic that the Nobel Prize–winning economist Amartya Sen wrote about in his Argumentative Indian, a book that Rajesh reviewed shortly before Anu graduated. The review closed with this small tribute: “For Professor John ‘Jock’ McLane, the first of a long line of teachers who fostered in RCO a life-long learning about — and love for — all things Indian.”
The tribute led to Professor McLane and Mrs. McLane inviting the Oza Family to their home for tea and biscuits. Besides the evident love that our host and hostess had for each other, their home on Davis Street was steeped in history, including a grand portrait of a Civil War military leader to whom Professor McLane was related. The McLane family’s gracious hospitality in the middle of Anu’s education led to a deepening of the guru-chela relationship, a relationship borrowed from ancient India and translated into the heart of a university campus in the middle of America.
Lifelong Mentor Encouraging Lives Well-Lived
For Anu, her guru always remained Professor McLane: She took one more course with him on the Indian Partition, introduced him to her grandparents at her graduation, asked him to inspire her students to pursue higher education when she was with Teach for America on Chicago’s West Side (please see attached photo of the Guru, his chela and a batch of Anu’s chelas), and requested that he write a graduate school letter of recommendation to Harvard (which she treasured since it enabled the two of them to share an alma mater).
But for Rajesh, shortly after the tea and biscuits, Professor McLane became “Jock” and Mrs. McLane was “Joan.” Over the past decade and a half, Rajesh has been returning to campus to serve on the McCormick School of Engineering’s Industrial Engineering and Management Science Advisory Board. After the tea and biscuits, Rajesh (who became “Raj” to Jock) always made a point to meet with his old professor. They talked about so much under the sun:
- Jock’s undergraduate days and his decision to study history to better understand social inequalities across the world, and in India, Gandhian non-violent civil disobedience against injustice
- Raj’s shift away from biomedical engineering to organizational change consulting and a lifelong commitment to understanding India, America, and the world through a Gandhian lens
- Jock’s happiness in his and Joan’s son, daughter and grandchildren
- Raj’s happiness in his and Mangla’s daughter and son (and in 2019 Anu’s daughter)
- Jock commiserating on how despite his best lobbying efforts (both on and off the tennis court where he parried with then Northwestern President Henry Bienen), he still could not convince the administration to require a course on non-Western cultures
- Raj sharing that he met President Bienen at Anu’s graduation and asked about how we can best make Northwestern a world-class institute through greater focus on Asia, particularly India
- Jock’s introducing Raj to newer members of the faculty like Rajeev Kinra to whom Jock had passed the baton of teaching South Asian history
- Raj fondly recalling the troika of Jock McLane, James Sheridan and Conrad Totman teaching the histories of India, China, and Japan when he was an undergraduate student
- Jock's perspective on how much the demographics and capabilities of Northwestern students had changed since 1961
- Raj’s musing on how Northwestern’s students had improved, only half-jokingly sharing that he would not have been accepted in the year that Anu matriculated
- Jock conveying his abiding interest in environmental history and “green Chicago”
- Raj proudly appreciating his son’s majoring in Earth Systems at Stanford
- Jock sharing his final academic writing on “Hindu Victimhood and India's Muslim Minority,” which was published in 2010
- Raj sharing his book Satyalogue // Truthtalk, which is a portmanteau of “Satya” (Sanskrit for truth) and “logue” (Greek for discourse)
In Jock and Raj’s final email discourse last fall, Jock was open about his condition. He wrote, “As much as I would like to see you, I think we should look forward to your next visit. I have several things going on at the moment with the cancer and a faulty heart valve, and I need to conserve my energy. I will regret not seeing you. It is a rough period in my life.”
Raj responded, “So sorry about this rough patch and hoping it is just that, a patch; but I do recognize that you've previously shared that it is likely to be more of a longer stretch of road. All this talk about roads inspires me to watch Pather Panchali (Song of the Little Road) for the hundredth time. I saw my first Satyajit Ray film at NU; I was a freshman in my first quarter and felt quite confused by "Devi" and all that it represented. A couple of years later I was reading Bibuthibhusan Bandhopadhyay's Pather Panchali and by happenstance went to Facet's Multimedia with friends to see the Apu Trilogy a week after reading the novel. My life was transformed by the transformations that Apu experienced in those three films. Indeed, the film nudged me towards marrying a woman from Bengal, and life has been forever changed.”
Jock’s final correspondence ended with reference to the part of India where he began his studies and what connected him and Raj at deeper, humanistic level:
I loved the Apu trilogy, especially Pather Panchali. I saw it (or maybe them) in London while I was in graduate school. I was already drawn towards Bengal because my friends at the India Office Library were Bengalis. They included Barun De, Tapan Raychaudhuri, and Ranjit Guha, if you know who they were. Is there any prettier pastoral landscape with the pleasing hut shapes than Bengal’s, I do not know it …
With best wishes, Jock”
In his preface to Introducing India in Liberal Education, the University of Chicago anthropologist Milton Singer wrote, “Leaders in the field of liberal education are now generally agreed that a student cannot be considered liberally educated if his undergraduate studies neglect the Asian world. The major question now is not whether to include the Asian world in the undergraduate curriculum but how.” Jock McLane learned that the answer to “how” came from being in ongoing dialogue with his students. And because of a dialogue that transcended the classroom, two generations of the Oza family (and we imagine multiple generations of Northwestern students) have benefited from having their worldviews enlarged to encompass India.
We will miss Professor McLane. Given Jock’s love for the Bengali countryside, perhaps it is fitting that we end by quoting the Nobel Prize–winning Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore, whose Gitanjali (Song Offerings) reminds us that our guru’s undying values live on:
Where the mind is without fear and the head is held high;
Where knowledge is free;
Where the world has not been broken up into fragments by narrow domestic walls;…
Where the clear stream of reason has not lost its way into the dreary desert sand of dead habits.
Anupama R. Oza ’08 is on sabbatical from teaching, committing herself to raising her daughter who turned 1 this year. Rajesh C. Oza ’81, ’84, ’86 MS is a change management consultant and also contributes to the development of interpersonal dynamics of MBA students at Stanford’s Graduate School of Business.
Photo caption: Jock McLane giving a tour of University Library to Anu Oza and her students in 2010