Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 17
Wednesday, April 28, 2010
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Walter F. Murphy

Doris E. Greene

Lois Tegarden

Reba Carraway

David L. Frothingham Jr.

Louie Clark Spencer

Theresa Caplan

Helen Brener Smith

Jules Louis Dussourd

Walter F. Murphy

Walter F. Murphy

Walter F. Murphy, 80, a groundbreaking constitutional scholar at Princeton University, died April 20 in Charleston, S.C. The cause was cancer.

Prof. Murphy taught at Princeton for 37 years, ultimately serving as the McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, a chair first held by former president Woodrow Wilson. Prof. Murphy’s students included U.S. Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito, for whom he served as a senior thesis adviser.

Prof. Murphy was a leading scholar and teacher on a variety of topics, focusing first on political theory and later on judicial decision-making. He then broadened his interests to comparative politics and the problems of creating and maintaining constitutional democracy. Scattered among more than a dozen academic books and numerous articles were three novels noted for their scholarly as well as their literary merit.

“Intellectually, Walter was a leader in many ways,” said Sotirios Barber, a professor of political science at the University of Notre Dame who was a collaborator with Prof. Murphy for more than 25 years. “He pioneered the study of judicial politics within the Supreme Court — the politics of putting together a coalition on the court to reach a decision. He pioneered the study of comparative constitutional law, and was the founder of what’s now called in some circles the ‘Princeton approach’ to constitutional studies.”

Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., Prof. Murphy attended the University of Notre Dame, earning his A.B. in 1950. He then served in the U.S. Marine Corps in Korea, receiving the Distinguished Service Cross, the Purple Heart, a Presidential Unit Citation, and three battle stars. Upon returning from combat, he was assigned to teach at the U.S. Naval Academy from 1952 to 1955. During the evenings, he attended Georgetown University’s Institute of Linguistics and received an M.A. from George Washington University in 1954. He then resigned his military commission to attend graduate school at the University of Chicago, where he earned his Ph.D. in 1957. He spent a year as a fellow at the Brookings Institution and joined the Princeton faculty as an assistant professor of politics in 1958. He was named the McCormick Professor in 1968 and retained that chair until his retirement with emeritus status in 1995.

He remained in the Marine Corps Reserve, retiring in 1974 as a colonel. He made his home in the Sandia Mountains east of Albuquerque, N.M., for many years.

“In addition to being a first-rate scholar, he was an interesting and popular novelist,” said Fred Greenstein, a professor of politics emeritus. “The latter began when he decided that he could not publish his findings in a study of the inner workings of the Catholic Church without compromising the clergymen who were his sources. That led him to publish The Vicar of Christ, a three-part novel that follows a character who first experiences combat in Korea, then becomes a Supreme Court justice and finally the first American Pope — a real page-turner.” The 1979 novel landed on The New York Times best-seller list and won the Chicago Foundation for Literature Award.

His colleagues described Prof. Murphy as a beloved teacher and mentor to generations of graduate students who now teach in universities across the United States. He was known for one course in particular. “His course on Constitutional Interpretation changed my life,” said Princeton Provost Christopher Eisgruber, who served as a clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice John Paul Stevens before returning to academia. “In his hands, the Constitution and the Supreme Court became magical and wondrous subjects. He inspired me, and many others, to careers as constitutional scholars.”

Robert George, the current McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, joined the Princeton faculty in 1985 and began serving as Prof. Murphy’s preceptor in the course before taking over as lecturer in 1995. “He was my mentor,” said Prof. George. “I had the great advantage of being able to sit at the feet of the master and learn how to teach the course.”

In 2001, the annual Walter Murphy Lecture in American Constitutionalism was named in his honor. In March 2007, Prof. Murphy thought it was particularly ironic that he was detained by screeners — and originally denied a boarding pass — at the airport in Albuquerque on his way to a symposium at Princeton on his magnum opus, Constitutional Democracy: Creating and Maintaining a Just Political Order.

Prof. Murphy served as a member of the Committee on Judicial Conduct for the Supreme Court of New Jersey, a member of the New Jersey Civil Rights Commission, and a member of the New Jersey Advisory Commission to the U.S. Civil Rights Commission. He was also secretary and later vice president of the American Political Science Association, a member of the editorial board of the American Political Science Review, and book review editor of World Politics.

Elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1976, he received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Guggenheim Foundation, as well as three Fulbright awards. In 1995, the Law and Courts Section of the American Political Science Association honored him with its Lifetime Achievement Award.

Prof. Murphy was married for 54 years to Mary Therese Dolan Murphy, who died in 2006. In 2009, he moved from Albuquerque back to Charleston and married Doris Maher Murphy of Ravenel, S.C. on January 9, 2010. He is survived also by his two daughters, Kelly Murphy of Albuquerque and Holly Murphy of Denver.

The funeral service was April 24 at Christ St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Yonges Island, S.C.

A campus memorial service at Princeton will be scheduled at a later date.

Memorial contributions may be sent to the Trustees of Princeton University, along with a cover letter indicating specific information on the fund to which the donation is to be directed, to Terry Murphy President’s Fund (0813536), Alumni and Donor Records, Princeton University, c/o Helen Hardy, P.O. Box 5357, Princeton 08543-5357.

Doris E. Greene

Doris E. Greene

Mrs. Doris E. Greene, 89, of Ocean View, N.J., formerly of Princeton, died April 15 at Merwick Care Center in Princeton.

The daughter of Thomas and Claretta Caldwell Bason, she was a graduate of James B. Dudley High School in Greensboro, N.C. Her spiritual teachings began at an early age at Skeen’s Chapel Church in Greensboro. During her adult life she was an active member of Mount Pisgah AME Church in Princeton.

A domestic engineer, she lived a life dedicated to her family, friends, and church.

She was married in 1946 to George Greene, who preceded her in death in 1973. She was also predeceased by her siblings Douglas P. Bason, Donald Bason, and Calvin Bason. She is survived by two brothers, Thomas Bason Jr. of Spotsylvania, Va. and Henry Bernard Bason of Morristown, N.J.; a sister; Mildred B. Stephens of Ocean View; and many nieces, nephews, other relatives, and friends.

The funeral service will be this Friday, April 30 at 1 p.m. at the Hughes Funeral Home, 324 Bellevue Avenue, Trenton. Calling hours will be from 11 a.m. until the service at the funeral home. Interment will be in Franklin Memorial Park, North Brunswick.

Lois Tegarden

Lois Tegarden

Lois Armington Thornton Tegarden, 85, a longtime resident of Princeton, died April 18 at the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born in Providence, R.I., she received a bachelor of science degree from Brown University in 1946. After college, she worked as a laboratory technician in the Public Health Dept. of Cambridge, Mass., where she played second violin in the MIT Symphony Orchestra.

In 1949 she married her Brown classmate, William Hollis Tegarden, who had recently graduated from Harvard Divinity School. She joined him as he began his ministry at the Unitarian Church of Marblehead, Mass. In 1955 the couple moved to Portland, Maine, when Mr. Tegarden was called to the pulpit of the First Unitarian Church of Portland.

The Tegardens moved with their three children to Princeton in 1958, when Mr. Tegarden left the ministry to pursue a new career in market research. Mrs. Tegarden soon began a new life of her own, launching a successful career in local real estate and joining the Pretty Brook Tennis Club, where she pursued her lifelong passion for tennis and formed many friendships that would last her entire lifetime.

Most of her years in real estate were spent as an associate broker at John T. Henderson (now Henderson/Sotheby International), where she specialized in residential properties. But she was also involved in her community in many quiet ways — as a sustaining member of the Junior League of N.J., a member of the Princeton University Parents Association, and, for 30 years, a member of the Trinity Church Choir.

An accomplished and spirited sportswoman, Mrs. Tegarden learned to sail by crewing for her father at the Edgewood Yacht Club in Cranston, R.I., and throughout her life maintained close ties with her family roots in Rhode Island. She summered every year in Jamestown, R.I., where she and her family were members of Conanicut Yacht Club.

In addition to her successes in business, her athletic talent, and her love of music, she was also devoted to championing the cause of the mentally ill. Taking courage from her personal experiences with family illness, she became an active organizer for the Mercer County Association for the Mentally Handicapped, where she was able to use her real estate skills to find residences for patients discharged from Trenton Psychiatric Hospital.

Predeceased by husband of 54 years, “Holly” Tegarden, in 2003, she is survived by her three children, Deborah Armington Tegarden Bass and William Hollis Tegarden Jr., both of Princeton, and Pamela Adams Tegarden Allen of Jamestown, R.I.; and three grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held this Friday, April 30 at 1 p.m. at Trinity Church, 33 Mercer Street. A formal funeral will be scheduled next month at Swan Point, in East Providence, R.I. To those who would send flowers, her family asks that contributions be made instead to N.A.M.I. New Jersey, 1562 Route 130, North Brunswick, N.J. 08902.

Reba Carraway

Reba Carraway

Reba Carraway, 85, of Altadena, Calif., a former longtime resident of Princeton, died April 14 in Wayne, Michigan, after a lengthy illness.

She is survived by two daughters, Barbara Booker of East Orange, N.J. and Janice Kendrick of Wayne, Mich.; five grandchildren; eight great-grandchildren; and two great-great grandchildren.

The funeral service was April 21 at the First Baptist Church on Paul Robeson Place. Interment was in Princeton Cemetery. 

Arrangements were by the Hughes Funeral Home.

David L. Frothingham Jr.

David L. Frothingham Jr., 61, of Bondville, Vt., formerly of Princeton, died peacefully at home with his family by his side, on April 16 after a three-year battle with cancer.

Born in New York City to Margaret Morgan and David L. Frothingham, he was a graduate of Princeton Country Day, Millbrook School, and Middlebury College. He spent his life as a gourmand, lover of fine wines, avid cyclist, and antiques enthusiast. After his retirement from Vermont Country Store he worked at Stratton’s Sun Bowl Base Lodge as a guest services agent, where he touched the hearts of many guests, friends, and co-workers.

He is survived by his wife, Pamela Frothingham; his mother, Margaret Morgan of Princeton; two children, David Frothingham III of Waterbury, Vt. and Gillian Frothingham of Denver, Colo.; and four siblings, William Frothingham of Basalt, Colo., Caroline Frothingham of Denver, Ellen Fisher of York, Maine, and Pieter Fisher of Mexico.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Norris Cancer Center at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, c/o Brewster Funeral Services, P.O. Box 885, Manchester, Vt. 05255.

Louie Clark Spencer

Louie Clark Spencer

Louie Clark Spencer, 94, of Signal Mountain, Tennessee, formerly of Princeton, where she was a member of Nassau Presbyterian Church, died on Sunday, April 18. A graduate of Greenville (Georgia) High School, with degrees from Shorter College and the Draughon School of Business, she worked at TVA from 1937 to 1941 in Knoxville and Chattanooga, Tennessee. As the wife of a US Navy officer, she lived in New York, Virginia, Hawaii, Washington, Louisiana, Texas and New Jersey, as well as Ahwaz, Iran, and Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

A proud wife, mother, grandmother and great-grandmother, she was a faithful member of her church, a wonderful cook and gardener, a caregiver to her brothers when they were young, an athlete, and president of her athletic association in college. She was kind to animals and a friend to everyone. Preceded in death by her husband, Frank Addison Spencer; parents, Louis and Laura Clark; brothers, William and George Clark; and sisters, Josephine Fleming and Julia Goodyear, she is survived by her four sons: Frank Spencer of Woodbine, Md., Louis and Charles Spencer of Signal Mountain, and George Spencer of Chapel Hill, N.C.; nine grandchildren, two great-grandchildren, and many nieces and nephews.

Interment will be in Arlington National Cemetery at a later date. A service will also be held at 12 noon Saturday, May 8, at Nassau Presbyterian Church in Princeton. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the donor’s favorite charity. Visit to share condolences. Arrangements by Lane Funeral Home, 601 Ashland Terrace.

Theresa Caplan

Theresa Caplan, 96, died April 13 in Princeton.

Before her husband, Frank Caplan, died in 1988, she collaborated with him on several best-selling books for parents about early childhood development, including The First Twelve Months of Life, The Second Twelve Months of Life, The Early Years, and The Power of Play.

In the 1950s, Mr. and Mrs. Caplan founded Creative Playthings, a successful retail toy store in New York City, which later became a company that revolutionized early childhood educational playthings. They traveled together around the world and collected folk art and toys, which they eventually donated to the Indianapolis Children’s Museum.

Mrs. Caplan was a generous woman who had an enthusiasm for life, education, culture, and people. She is survived by a daughter, Judith Inglese; a son, Richard Caplan; nine grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Helen Brener Smith

Helen Brener Smith, 91, a longtime Princeton resident, died April 21 at the University Medical Center at Princeton.

Born on the lower East Side of New York, she was raised in Brooklyn, graduated from Hunter College in Manhattan in 1939, and moved to Orchard Farm in Princeton in 1947, living in Princeton for the rest of her life with sojourns in Morocco and Texas.

She was known among her children, grandchildren, other relatives, and friends for being a warrior rather than a survivor, for giving the shirt off her back to anyone who asked — as long as the shirt had style and pizzazz, and for exhibiting boundless energy and spunk when dealing with both the challenges and happy times in her life.

Active in the community in local garden, women’s, and duplicate bridge groups, and in her work for a dozen years as a Princeton real estate broker, she was one of the founding members of The Jewish Center of Princeton 60 years ago. Considered irreverent and iconoclastic about religion, she nevertheless exhibited an unshakable belief in the value of family and community, driving her commitment to The Jewish Center as a gathering spot for those who shared a sense of Jewish community. Her personal temple for bringing together family and friends, however, was her beloved Orchard Farm and farmhouse in Princeton, where she displayed her cooking skills, warmth, and generosity to her family, extended family, and friends. When fire destroyed the homestead, the house was rebuilt by the immediate family. A 90th birthday celebration in Princeton brought 70 family members and friends together to honor her and was a testament to how greatly she was loved and admired.

Married to David Copperfield Brener, who predeceased her in 1956, and to Dr. Alan Smith, who predeceased her in 1997, she is survived by her children, Harry Brener of Princeton, Anne Brener of Princeton, and Andrew Brener of Columbia, S.C.; eight grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren. Her youngest son, Richard Brener of Princeton, predeceased her in 1982.

Friends and family paid their respects to Mrs. Smith April 23 at The Jewish Center. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Princeton Public Library or The Jewish Center of Princeton.

Jules Louis Dussourd

Jules Louis Dussourd, 85, of Skillman, died April 3 at his home in Stonebridge at Montgomery.

Born in Woodside, New York, he was transplanted as an infant to the Zurich area of Switzerland and then to France, where he graduated from the Lycee Champolion in Grenoble. During World War II, after the Allied invasion of North Africa and subsequent Nazi occupation of Vichy France, he escaped across the Pyrenees to Spain and back to the U.S. in 1943. There he graduated in mechanical engineering from the City College of New York in 1947. He then taught mechanical engineering at City College while working on a Master’s degree from Columbia University, which he completed in 1949.

His first industrial job took him to Fort Worth, Texas, where he worked as a senior propulsion engineer for Convair and where he met Eugenia Chappell, whom he married in 1953. After completing his Sc.D. at MIT in 1954, he joined AiResearch in Los Angeles and Phoenix. There he designed and developed the compressor for the company’s first main propulsion engine for helicopters and small aircraft. In 1963, he moved to Princeton to become assistant director and department head of Ingersoll Rand Research, Inc., a position he held until 1986, when he founded Jules L. Dussourd and Associates to consult with aerospace and industrial companies.

Mr. Dussourd was involved with the American Society of Mechanical Engineers as a chairman of the Fluids Engineering Division, associate editor of the Gas Turbine Division, and member and visitor of the Accreditation Committee. He was honored as an ASME Fellow and Life Member in 1975 and received the JT Stephenson Award. He received 15 patents and published 30 journal articles and papers on fluids engineering, turbomachinery, and power engineering.

He was a lifetime member and elder of Nassau Presbyterian Church, where he was an avid participant and organizer of adult education classes aimed at bridging the chasm between science and theology. His other interests included tennis, bridge, and camping.

He is survived by his wife, Eugenia; a son, David of Conway, Ark.; a daughter, Ellen of Buffalo, N.Y.; and a grandson. He will be remembered for his dedication to his family, joy in travel and exploration, skill at tinkering and invention, sense of humor and imagination, and love of engineering, history, and science.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on May 11 at Nassau Presbyterian Church. Memorial contributions in lieu of flowers may be made to Hospice.

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