Town Topics — Princeton's Weekly Community Newspaper Since 1946.
Vol. LXIV, No. 14
Wednesday, April 7, 2010
Coldwell Banker Princeton Office

Prudential Fox and Roach, Realtors

Gloria Nilson GMAC Real Estate

Henderson Sotheby's International Realty

N.T. Callaway Princeton Office

Stockton Real Estate, LLC

Weichert, Realtors

Advertise in Town Topics

Iris Interiors

Advertise in Town Topics

Weather Forecast


Kai Soderman

Franklin D. Crawford

Roderick Mackenzie

Kai Soderman

Former Princeton resident Kai Hans Roland Soderman died on March 20 in Stockholm, Sweden, the same city that he emigrated from when he came to the United States in 1949. He was born in 1927.

Following his service in the U.S. Army, he pursued a music career in Los Angeles and New York City, where he performed in Swedish-American nightclubs. After numerous appearances on the Arthur Godfrey Radio Talent Show, he signed with Decca Records and recorded with the Gordon Jenkins Band. His collaboration with Saja Sjoberg on Best Loved Songs of Sweden was recently included in the Smithsonian Folkways Archival Collection. In addition to performing on World Sings Goodnight, an International Lullaby Album produced by Grammy Winner Tom Wasinger of Silver Wave Records, he recorded a “Greatest Hits” Album in 1984. 

A Princeton resident for 20 years, he sold life insurance for New York Life and was a Million Dollar Round Table winner for most of that time. He was an active member of All Saints Church and sponsored a Little League baseball team.

He is survived by eight children, six from his first marriage to Susan Thayer: John Soderman of San Diego, Calif.; Peter of Princeton; Paul of Boulder, Colorado; Sally of Phoenix, Arizona; Jennifer of San Francisco, Calif.; and Polly Soderman of San Diego. He is also survived by Robin and Michelle, of Stockholm, both from a second marriage. He leaves behind nine grandchildren.

Memorial services will be held in Stockholm in April.

Franklin D. Crawford

Franklin David Crawford, 81, of Princeton, died March 15 at home.

Born in Denver, Colo., he was the son of the Rev. Clifford and Sara (Ferguson) Crawford.

He served in the U.S. Air Force from 1946 to 1949, and again from 1953 to 1954 as a photo officer. After his first service in the Air Force, he received his B.A. from Alma White College, Bound Brook, N.J. and took graduate courses at New York University.

Highly motivated, he soon moved up to positions of greater responsibility with a number of retailers. From 1954 to 1963 he gained executive experience with Saks Fifth Avenue, Federated Department Stores, Allied Stores, and JC Penney. He then applied his entrepreneurial talent to start Princeton Microfilm Corporation (PMC) in 1963. As president of PMC, he was frequently called upon to serve on panels and give lectures for librarians and at microfilm conventions.

He was also successful in real estate, owning many properties in Princeton, Vail, Colo., and Newport, R.I.

An avid tennis player, he served on the board of directors of the International Tennis Hall of Fame (ITHF) from 1979 to 1997, serving on various ITHF committees during those years. A familiar face at the Princeton Indoor Tennis Center, which he co-owned until it was sold in 2008, he enjoyed many years of playing tennis there. He also served on the board of the Princeton Tennis Program, working closely with the founder of the program, Eve Kraft.

A member of the Nassau Club and The Reading Room in Newport, R.I., Mr. Crawford was listed in Who’s Who in America.

Predeceased by his wife of 39 years, Ruth Emilia Dallenbach, in 1996, he is survived by their two sons, Mark Franklin and Grant Robert; his wife of nine years, Leslie (Blauth) Crawford; two brothers, Clifford Theodore and Reverend Stanford Rea; a sister, Joan Murray; and a granddaughter.

Memorial contributions may be made to the Princeton Tennis Program, c/o the Eve Kraft Community Tennis Center, 92 Washington Road, Princeton 08540. 

A memorial service will be held at Nassau Presbyterian Church this Sunday, April 11 at 2 p.m. A reception will follow at the church. 

Roderick Mackenzie

Roderick Mackenzie, 75, of Bonita Springs, Fla. and Jaffrey, N.H., died February 18. He had been a resident of Princeton from 1973 to 2001.

Born in Blucher, Saskatchewan to Alec and Leona (Lecours) Mackenzie, he received a B.Sc. in chemical engineering from the University of Saskatchewan in 1956 and completed the Advanced Management Program of the Columbia University Graduate School of Business.

He was president of three Johnson & Johnson companies in Canada and the United States from 1964 to 1980, and a vice president of J&J International from 1978 to 1980. In 1984 he founded Gynopharma Inc., specializing in gynecologic and diagnostic products. The company was sold to J&J in 1995. The same year he started Gynetics Inc., dedicated to advancing women’s health. That company was sold in 2004. He was also president of The Mackenzie Group, a consulting service for medical and pharmaceutical businesses.

Mr. Mackenzie served on the boards of many health-related and trade organizations relating to women’s health and research. He had been a member of the Young Presidents Organization and the Metropolitan Presidents Organization in New York, the Union League Club of New York, and the Nassau Club of Princeton.

He always had a story to tell and loved to read and engage in good discussions. He maintained a keen interest in his Saskatchewan family history.

He enjoyed living in the shadow of Mt. Monadnock in New Hampshire and on the beach in Florida, especially when the whole family was together.

He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Eila; three sons, Davin of Beijing, China, Ian of Chicago, and Duncan of Telluride, Colo.; and four grandchildren.

Memorial contributions may be made to The Mt. Monadnock Conservancy, P.O. Box 337, Keene, N.H. 03431-0337.

Return to Top | Go to Weddings/Engagements

Town Topics® may be purchased on Wednesday mornings at the following locations: Princeton — McCaffrey’s, Cox’s, Kiosk (Palmer Square), Krauszer’s (State Road), Olives, Speedy Mart (State Road), Wawa (University Place); Hopewell — Village Express; Rocky Hill — Wawa (Route 518); Pennington — Pennington Market.
Copyright© Town Topics®, Inc. 2011.