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Book - Briefly Noted
Spring 2017

Briefly noted


No Barriers: A Blind Man’s Journey to Kayak the Grand Canyon

Erik Weihenmayer and Buddy Levy

Thomas Dunne Books: 2017 

After Weihenmayer became the first and only blind man to reach the top of Mount Everest, he decided his next adventure would be to traverse the treacherous Grand Canyon by kayak. He and Levy, a Washington State University instructor, chronicle the turbulent whitewater journey, and the insights gained by Weihenmayer and other trailblazers he has met.


Unusual Punishment: Inside the Walla Walla Prison, 1970–1985

Christopher Murray

WSU Press: 2016

Murray was an employee of the Washington State Department of Social and Health Services … » More …

Class Notes
Spring 2017

Class notes


James Moll (’72 Comm.) was recognized as a local hero in Butte County, California, by the local newspaper. Moll, who has worked in radio and serves as emcee for community events, is known as “The Voice of Oroville.” He was recognized for his efforts to help restore the historic State Theatre in downtown Oroville. Moll served as president of the local Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals and led a drive to build a new shelter for the surrounding community.

Pierce College Chancellor Michele Johnson (’74 Poli. Sci., ’75 MA Poli. Sci.) won the Chief Executive Officer award for the Pacific region, … » More …

In Memoriam
Spring 2017

In memoriam


Robert William Pirie (’40 Forest & Range Mgmt.), 99, October 17, 2016, Tacoma.

Dorothy M. Pirie (’41 Home Econ.), 96, April 27, 2016, Tacoma.

Blanche Adams King (’42, ’46 MA Home Econ.), 98, September 12, 2016, Pullman.

Charles E. Gardner (’43 Chem. Eng.), 93, October 17, 2016, Sonoma, California.

Frances Evelyn Hurd (’43 Home Econ.), 90, July 24, 2012, Spokane.

Warren Kelble Smith (’43 Busi.), 94, May 15, 2016, Shoreline.

Jean Gleason Witt (’43, ’48 MS Botany), 95, August 27, 2016, Des Moines.

James L. Frederickson (’44 DVM), 95, August 1, 2016, Bakersfield, California.

Verna Lou Hisey (’44 Phys. Ed.), 95, November 14, 2016, … » More …

Mushrooms, after the rains
Spring 2017

After the rains

WSU meteorologist Nic Loyd is stuck on one word for last October’s Washington weather: Wet.

Make that two words: Abnormally wet. Sea-Tac measured over 10 inches of rainfall. Even dry Yakima saw almost 2-1/2 inches. But the undisputed epicenter of soggy conditions was Spokane which registered not only their rainiest October ever, but the highest precipitation for any month ever recorded: a whopping 6-1/4 inches. That’s remarkable when compared to an average October rainfall of just 1-1/4 inches. Especially given that their typical annual total is just over 16 inches.

Loyd says this was due to an unusually deep and persistent trough of low pressure … » More …

Meleah and Dan Nordquist
Spring 2017

Adopt a Coug

Meleah Nordquist ’16 loves WSU, and so does her dad, Dan Nordquist. He grew up on the Palouse, has worked at WSU for 26 years, and enjoys listening to his father tell stories about his days as student body president and a Cougar football player in the early ’50s.

With those ties, you’d think that all of the Nordquists are Cougs.  Truth is, Dan is not. He went to the University of Idaho. Despite his silver-and-gold education, Dan bleeds crimson and gray. Meleah knew that her dad was a Coug deep inside. She just needed to find a way to officially acknowledge it.


This … » More …

Talk Back
Winter 2016

Talkback for Winter 2016


Spirit of ’25

The reference in William Stimson’s article (Fall 2016) on the 1925 rally for the Cougar football team to students as forerunners of “The Greatest Generation” struck a chord. As a history department T.A., I researched the 1938 student strike for Dr. George Frykman. Issues may seem trivial to postmodern eyes (Dean Fertig’s proscription of blankets on picnics is one example), but students’ experience in campus mobilization was not. What started as pique over parietal rules became an experience in leadership. Indeed, some student organizers became war heroes within the decade. I remember that Lt. Col. Jerry Sage responded to my … » More …