1950s Featured Legacies Legacies

Barbara Louise Norby (BSJ55)

Barbara Louise Norby of Bainbridge Island, Wash., died Feb. 28, 2019. She worked in public relations and marketing, practiced yoga, studied Sanskrit, raised a family, and traveled the world. She was 85.

Norby was born in Rowayten, Conn. in 1933 but spent her childhood in many places, including Virginia, where she and her friends would often race up the stairs of the Washington Monument.

Norby, who was valedictorian of her high school class, went on to major in journalism at Medill on a full scholarship, where she met Richard Palmer Hollis (BSJ55). The couple dated exclusively, and after graduating in 1955, they married. Norby worked in New York City as a public relations specialist, until the birth of her three sons: Charles Palmer, James Richard and John William. In 1966 the family moved to Los Altos, Calif.

As her children grew, she returned to the workforce. Rapidly she climbed the ladder, rising to manage entire marketing departments for high-tech and biomedical firms.

Norby is remembered for her curiosity and wide range of interests, including yoga. She became the founder and president of the Yoga Society of America and learned Sanskrit. She explored self-hypnosis, studied nutrition and traveled widely.

She and her husband retired in 1995 and moved to Bainbridge Island, where they remained active in the local church community. After finding a deep passion for the Eastern healing art of Reiki, Norby founded one of the first Christian Reiki groups.

Norby is survived her husband by nine years and her grandchildren.

1950s Legacies

Glen W. Bays (MSJ59)

Glen Weldon Bays, a former member of the National Guard and a dedicated fraternal worker for the church, died April 26, 2019, in Stillwater, Okla. He was 87. Bays, born in Stillwater on Aug. 12, 1931, graduated high school there in 1949, then joined the National Guard and served a tour of duty in the Korean War.

Bays returned to Stillwater and attended the Oklahoma Agricultural and Mechanical College, where he met Betty Katherine Steelman. After what their local paper, the Stillwater News Press, called“a courtship propelled by a Harley Davidson motorcycle,” the couple married Oct. 17, 1953.

Bays and his wife had two children, Yvonne Glenda Housley and John Steelman Bays. Bays received his Bachelor of Arts degree from Oklahoma A&M on May 28, 1956, followed by a master’s degree from Medill, and a doctorate from Union Theological Seminary in New York City.

Glen and Betty Bays served as fraternal workers for the church in Africa and Papua, New Guinea, before returning to the U.S. to lead churches in Kansas and Minnesota.

They retired to Stillwater in 2000, and lived surrounded by friends. Bays is survived by his wife, his sister, and his daughter and her family.

1960s Featured Legacies Legacies

Connie Kang (MSJ64)

Kyonshill Connie Kang (MSJ64), thought to be the first Korean American female reporter in the United States, died Aug. 1, 2019. She was 76.

Kang was born in 1942 in what is now North Korea. By the time she was 4 her family had fled their ancestral homeland, settling first in Okinawa, Japan, and later in San Francisco, according to a biography of Kang in “Distinguished Asian Americans: a Biographical Dictionary.” Kang’s passion for English and writing blossomed through her “tumultuous and circuitous”  journey to America–across three countries and in three languages.

Kang studied journalism as an undergraduate at the University of Missouri, according to her biography, and then in 1964 she became the first Korean to receive her master’s degree from Medill.

After graduating she wrote for the San Francisco Chronicle and the San Francisco Examiner. Kang became the first Korean-speaking reporter at the Los Angeles Times in 1992, the Times said in an Obituary of Kang, after the paper acknowledged a growing need for reporters who could share the voices of Los Angeles’ Asian American communities.

“She would be flooded with calls from Korean Americans who wanted to get their stories out there, because no one else in the mainstream media spoke their language,” Hyungwon Kang, a former LA Times photo editor, told the Times.

Connie Kang also wrote a regular column for Koreatown Weekly, where coworkers spoke of her invaluable contributions to journalism.

In her final years at the Los Angeles Times, Kang began reporting and writing about religion, and then left the paper to become a minister. She graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary in 2017, passed the U.S. Presbyterian Church’s ordination exam, and dreamed of building a Christian school in North Korea.

Friends told the LA Times they remembered her as “aesthetic-minded”: that she wore colorful wide-brimmed hats, drove with gloved fingers, and grew orchids.

Kang was buried next to her parents and younger brother in San Francisco, according to Hyungwon Kang.

Photo Credit: LA Times

1970s Featured Legacies Legacies

Robert H. Mann (BSJ72)

Robert Harris “Bob” Mann, a radio talk show host, reporter, and betting columnist, died Aug. 19, 2019.  He was 68. He is remembered for his lifelong interest in people, stories, and wagering.

Mann was born Sept. 26, 1950, to Paul Harold and Judith Berenson Mann, and grew up in New York. After earning a bachelor’s degree from Medill, he worked first as a radio talk show host in Ohio. He wrote for the National Enquirer and for CNN, which at that time was a fledgling network on its way to becoming a media giant.

Known for his friendliness and curiosity, Mann’s affability afforded him lifelong friends everywhere he worked, including in Nevada’s casino industry, where he moved in the late 1980s. Here Mann met Sondra Lynn Lynch, whom he married in March 1999. Mann successfully founded an enterprise printing parlay cards for casinos, and he wrote well-researched stories about gambling, particularly horse racing, for several publications, including Gaming Today and Sports Handle.

Friends remember that Mann enjoyed tennis and golf, and spending time at the racetrack. He is survived by his wife, Sondra; siblings Bruce, Beth and Steven; and his nephew’s family.

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The Flying Flamingo Sisters

Carrie Seim (MSJ 03)

Seim, a freelance writer for publications including The New York Times, NY Post, The Atlantic and Cosmo, has published her first book: The Flying Flamingo Sisters— a soaring audio adventure that will delight fans of The Goonies and Indiana Jones. Performed as a 1930s radio drama, it’s bursting with humor for all ages, orchestral scoring and some of the most talented voices on Broadway.

When their ace pilot parents mysteriously disappear over the Pacific, the Flamingo Sisters — Flo, Faye and Franny — escape the clutches of their evil Uncle Freidrich (who believes girls should never pilot aeroplanes) and join a flying circus. They soon become a smashing sensation, performing aerial acrobatics, wing walking and other death-defying feats in a dazzling biplane outfitted with three cockpits.

But when the girls discover a mysterious map — which may lead them to the long-lost Flamingo family fortune — their dastardly uncle follows them on a thrilling chase in the skies. The Flying Flamingo Sisters must use wits, courage and derring-do to solve secret codes and save their parents. Not to mention themselves!

The story was inspired by the real flying circus of Seim’s grandfather — and she was thrilled to join the cast of the Audible production.


Dead Reckoning

Caitlin Rother (MSJ87)

Tom and Jackie Hawks loved their life in retirement, sailing on their yacht, the Well Deserved. But when the birth of a new grandson called them back to Arizona, they put the boat up for sale. Skylar Deleon and his pregnant wife Jennifer showed up as prospective buyers, with their baby in a stroller, and the Hawkses thought they had a deal. Soon after a sea trial and an alleged purchase, however, the older couple disappeared and the Deleons promptly tried to access the Hawkses’ bank accounts.

As police investigated the case, they not only found a third homicide victim with ties to Skylar, they also uncovered an unexpected and unusual motive: Skylar had wanted gender reassignment surgery for years. By killing the Hawkses with a motley crew of assailants and plundering the couple’s assets, the Deleons had planned to clear their $100,000 in debts and still have money for the surgery, which Skylar had already scheduled.

Now, in this up-to-the-minute updated edition of DEAD RECKONING, which includes extensive new material, New York Times bestselling author Rother presents the latest breaking developments in the case. Skylar, who was ultimately sentenced to death row for the three murders, transitioned to a woman via hormones while living in the psych unit at San Quentin prison. Recently, she legally changed her name and gender to female, apparently a strategic step in her quest to obtain taxpayer-subsidized gender confirmation surgery and transfer to a women’s prison. Combined with Governor Gavin Newsom’s recent moratorium on executions, this only adds insult to injury for the victims’ families, who want Skylar to receive the ultimate punishment for her crimes.



Jeffrey Marshall (MSJ74)

In “Undetected,Jeffrey Marshall has created a suspense novel built around Suzy Perry, a lovely and sophisticated older woman who marries into a new family in Westchester County, N.Y. They know little about her past, which she guards closely – but they could never suspect that she’s a black widow who has killed two husbands, changed her name and abandoned her only daughter.

Her new husband’s son finds her enigmatic past troubling, especially as clues and tidbits of information emerge. A journalist, he brings his own skills and the help of a private investigator to ferret out more. As the evidence mounts, it becomes more than just circumstantial – and then Suzy is on the run.

This is Marshall’s second novel and fourth book.


Here Lies America: Buried Agendas and Family Secrets at the Tourist Sites Where Bad History Went Down

Jason Cochran (BSJ93)

In “Here Lies America,” Cochran, editor-in-chief at and host of a weekly travel radio show on WABC in NYC, takes his readers on a journey through disaster zones, battlefields, terrorist attack sites— as long as it has a parking lot and a gift shop, Cochran put it on the itinerary, no gravestone unturned. From coast to coast, he unearths history that was manipulated with monuments, discovers people who subtly carved propaganda into stone from Arlington to Hollywood to the Times Square subway, and asks why some our country’s most momentous sacrifices were all but erased from the landscape.

And when he pauses to find the spot where one of his own ancestors met an untimely demise, he unravels a tragic race-based murder plot that had remained buried for a century.


China Notes of the Venerable Foreign Expert

Patricia Endress (BSJ54, MSJ60)

“China Notes of the Venerable Foreign Expert,” is a collection of Endress’ articles she wrote for her local newspaper, The Sherman Sentinel.  The book chronicles her experience teaching college students in one of China’s first enterprise cities as the country entered the global market.  On and off from 2000 to 2008, she watched a drab city become a major tourist stop and the small college where she taught morph into a university.  In what she calls her “footnote to history,” she also recounts her adventures with Chinese medicine, new foods, hair cuts, and the wonderful students and friends she met along the way.


 Lavash: The bread that launched 1,000 meals, plus salads, stews, and other recipes from Armenia

Kate Leahy (MSJ06)

In “Lavash: The bread that launched 1,000 meals, plus salads, stews, and other recipes from Armenia,” Leahy teamed up with co-authors John Lee, a photojournalist, and Ara Zada, an Armenian-American chef, for a cookbook about the food of Armenia.

On their travels throughout this small country in the Caucasus, the trio not only met master lavash makers (who are always women) but also witnessed a political revolution that is currently reshaping Armenia’s future. In Lavash, readers learn how to make the country’s beloved UNESCO-recognized flatbread and discover the many dishes it enhances, from brothy soups and hearty salads to grilled meats, vegetables, and sweets. Meanwhile, location photography in Armenia and stories about the terrain provide glimpses into the country of Armenia itself. At its core, Lavash is a celebration of a simple bread eaten with simple food, a true reflection of this resilient, beautiful country.