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McMurry S. Richey T'36, G'39, G'54, professor emeritus of theology and Christian nurture in the Divinity School, died Oct. 22, 2005, in Durham, N.C.

McMurry S. Richey

After graduation from the divinity school, Mac Richey entered the Western North Carolina Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church, South. Ordained elder in 1943, he served pastorates until 1947 (Central Methodist, Asheville; Cullowhee; Kerr Street, Concord; and Brevard Street, Charlotte). Throughout his career, Richey took strong stands on social, political and economic issues. He made prophetic and sometimes unpopular witness on race, war and labor. For instance, speaking out for workers' interests and rights to organize in mill-owned Concord earned him a short appointment and a premature relocation.

He then moved to the University of Houston where he served as director of Methodist Student Work, director of religious activities and instructor in philosophy and religion before returning to Duke for a Ph.D. in religion.

After completion of his doctorate, Richey taught theology, Wesley studies, and religious education at the divinity school. From 1972 on, he served as director of continuing education, and for nearly 15 years organized, promoted and led student and pastor study-seminars to Mexico. Conversations between the Mexican and U.S. church and the interpretation of Latin American Christianity became a centerpiece of Richey's life and work. He retired in 1983.

Survivors include his wife, the former Erika Marx, whose parents were Moravian missionaries to Tibet, and son, Douglas, both of the home; sons and daughters-in-law, Russell and Merle Richey and Thomas and Nancy Richey of Atlanta; seven grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

Julian P. Moorman Jr. D'42 died Nov. 22, 2005, in Raleigh, N.C. Ordained as a Methodist chaplain, he served a long and distinguished career with the U.S. Navy.

Robert L. Bame D'44 died Aug. 28, 2005, in Wilmington, N.C. He served as a United Methodist pastor in the North Carolina Conferences for 40 years. His wife, Helen, a son, and a daughter survive him.

Susan V. Thomas-Azud D'80 died Feb. 11, 2005, in Baltimore, Md. She was a United Methodist pastor who served parishes of the Baltimore-Washington Conference for 25 years. Her generous friendship touched parishioners and colleagues deeply. She is survived by two sons.

Others in the Divinity School Family:

Oscar William “Bill" Rhodenhiser died on June 3, 2005, in Richmond, Va. He was a professor of religion at the University of Richmond for 37 years, a Baptist pastor, and a former member of the board of directors for the Baptist House of Studies at Duke Divinity School. He is survived by his wife, Nancye, two sons, two daughters including Ann Rhodenhiser-Verlander T'85, and nine grandchildren.

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