Deaths | March 2, 2012 | Palo Alto Weekly | Palo Alto Online |

Palo Alto Weekly

Community Pulse - March 2, 2012


John William Harrison

John William Harrison, born in 1915 in Mansfield, Ohio, where he lived most of his life, died Feb. 18 at Stanford Hospital.

He was an electrical engineer and had a long career at Westinghouse and the Bureau of Standards, and held many patents. He loved travel, opera and his life-long hobby of building fine furniture. He was a staunch Republican who loved the government and believed in paying taxes.

In 1984 he and his wife, Ruth, who died in 1992, moved to Palo Alto to live with their daughter, Judith Steiner, and son-in-law, Hans Steiner, and their three children, Remy and Hans-Christoph, of New York City and Joshua, of Oakland, all of whom survive him.

He is also survived by his son, John W. Harrison, Jr. of Georgia; daughter, Susan Harrison of Florida; grandchildren, Jenni and Kiri Brotsch; daughters-in-law, Patina Mendez and Rivka Karasik; and four great grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to Lytton Gardens, 649 University Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301; or the First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301.

Donald C. Loughry

Donald C. Loughry, a longtime member of the Palo Alto community, died Feb. 22 surrounded by his family.

He was born in Flushing, N.Y., on Jan. 12, 1931, the older of two sons of James Kenneth and Anita Loughry. He grew up in Ridgewood, N.J., and attended Ridgewood High School. He graduated in 1952 from Union College in Schenectady, N.Y., with a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering. After college he worked two years at the Naval Ordinance Lab in Maryland and then two years in the Army Signal Corp.

His major accomplishment in his 42 years working at Hewlett-Packard (1956 to 1998) was his leadership in the development of technical and Internet standards. He led work in the 1970s on the IEEE 488 bus that made it easier for machines to interface with each other. He was the key initiator of the IEEE's 802 family of standards during the 1980s and 1990s.

The 802.3 Ethernet standard is now used in more than 300 million computers and the 802.11 wireless standard is ubiquitous in mobile devices. These international standards enable for easy global communications. For his standards efforts, he earned many awards, including the 2003 IEEE Proteus Steinmetz Award and the 2011 IEEE Richard M. Emberson Award.

Staying abreast and educated on current events around the world — and sharing that knowledge — was always a goal of his. He led "Great Decisions," an annual eight-week course by the Foreign Policy Association, at First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto for more than 25 years.

He loved all varieties of science but especially enjoyed astronomy and would stay up all night watching and photographing an eclipse or a meteor shower. His other passion was bonsai; he found creating beauty in the form of miniature trees to be spiritual and relaxing.

After retirement, he combined his love of science and teaching by spending several days each week preparing and testing science experiments with a "wow factor" to excite his 6th-grade students at Crittenden school in Mountain View, where he volunteered for six years.

He was a loving husband and best friend of Alice, his wife of 55 years. He distinguished himself through his loyalty to family, friends, church, volunteer organizations and neighbors.

He is survived by his wife, Alice; son, Alex; daughter, Lynn Bergquist (Rick); grandchildren, Kristina and Eric Bergquist; brother, Richard (Janet), of Denver, Colo.; and brother-in-law, David Phillips (Ruth) of Maryland.

A Celebration of Life will be held Saturday, March 24, at 2 p.m. at the First United Methodist Church of Palo Alto, 625 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto. A reception at Fellowship Hall will follow.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Lucile Packard Foundation for Children's Health, 400 Hamilton Ave., Suite 340, Palo Alto, CA 94301; First United Methodist Church, 625 Hamilton Ave., Palo Alto, CA 94301; or KQED, 2601 Mariposa St., San Francisco, CA 94110.


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