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.
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.