The Rev. Homer “Jerry” A. Goddard III

The Rev. Homer “Jerry” A. Goddard III died on October 15, 2017 at the age of 87.

He is survived by wife Margaret “Peggy” Goddard; children Linda Goddard (Spencer Amesbury), Kirk Goddard (Kathy), and Jan Goddard-Taylor (Mark Taylor); and grandchildren Will Amesbury, Elena Goddard-Amesbury, Lauren Withers, Eliza Goddard, and Isabella Goddard-Taylor.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the American Civil Liberties Union and to Planned Parenthood.

A memorial service is being planned, to take place at First Parish in Concord, 20 Lexington Rd, Concord, MA 01742.

Notes of condolence can be sent to Peggy Goddard at 100 Russet Ct Apt 305, Lincoln, MA 01773.

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

Helen Rice Pickett

Helen Rice Pickett died on October 4, 2017 at the age of 88.

She is survived by her husband, the Rev. O. Eugene Pickett, and three daughters: Ann, Martha and Emily.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, October 14 at the Unitarian Universalist Meeting House in Chatham, Massachusetts.

Notes of condolence may be sent to the Rev. O. Eugene Pickett, 912 Main Street, #201, Chatham, MA  02633-2746.

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

The Rev. Donald William McKinney

The Rev. Donald William McKinney died on October 1, 2017 at the age of 90.

He is survived by wife of over 60 years Julie L.. McKinney, children Bruce B. McKinney and Barbara McKinney Sow, and grandchildren Omar and Adama Sow.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to First Unitarian Church, 54 Monroe Place, Brooklyn, NY 11201 and to First Universalist Church of Southold, P.O. Box 221, Southold, NY 11971.

Memorial services will take place at 2:00 p.m. on Saturday, October 28, 2017 at Jamesport Meeting House, 1590 Main Rd, Laurel, NY 11948; and at 2:00 p.m. on Sunday, November 12, 2017 at the First Unitarian Church of Brooklyn, NY (address above).

Notes of condolence can be sent to Julie McKinney at 1500 Brecknock Rd Apt 302, Greenport, NY, 11944.

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

The Rev. Robert “Bob” Nelson West

The Rev. Robert “Bob” Nelson West, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association from 1969 to 1977, died on September 27, 2017 at the age of 88.

He is survived by children Robert Jr., Charles, Thomas (Amy), and Mary Catherine Pinto (Josh); grandchildren Lila and George West, and Lily and Oliver Pinto; grandchild Phoebe; and sister Rilla Krebbs. He was predeceased by wife of 65 years Nancy.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Lynchburg College, 1501 Lakeside Dr., Lynchburg, VA 24501.

A memorial service is being planned; details will be released as they become available.

Notes of condolence can be sent to Thomas West, West88@verizon.net.

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

The Rev. Dr. John Burton Wolf

The Rev. Dr. John Burton Wolf died on September 19, 2017 at the age of 92.

He is survived by wife of 65 years Barbara N. Hudgins Wolf, son John David Wolf (Anita Jacobson Wolf) and daughter Catherine Elizabeth Wolf, grandson Aaron Michael Wolf-Johnson (Kayla Wolf-Johnson); and great-granddaughter Willow Rose Wolf-Johnson.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the John B. Wolf Memorial Fund, c/o All Souls Unitarian Church, 2952 S. Peoria Ave, Tulsa, OK 74114. The memorial fund will be distributed based on Rev. Dr. Wolf’s wishes and the wishes of his family.

A memorial service was planned on September 25, 2017 at All Souls Unitarian Church (address above).

Notes of condolence can be sent to the family at All Souls Unitarian Church (address above).

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

Betty Carolyn Murdock

Betty Murdock

Betty Murdock

Betty Carolyn Murdock died September 7, 2017, in Tulsa OK. The widow of the Reverend Dr. Virgil Murdock, she was 88 years old. Betty grew up in Hartshorne, OK where her parents, the late Elmer and Juanita Thrower, owned and published the Hartshorne Sun.

After high school, she attended Phillips University in Enid and graduated from the University of Oklahoma with a BA degree in journalism. She worked as a reporter for The Daily Oklahoman and the Oklahoma City Times.

In 1955, she and her husband moved to Cambridge, MA where he attended Harvard Divinity School. They remained in Massachusetts, where he served a congregation for a few years, then became the Executive Director of the Benevolent Fraternity of Unitarian Churches. Betty was active in a number of charitable organizations in Massachusetts. After they retired to Tulsa in 1986, she was a Gillie at the Gilcrease Museum.

Survivors include her daughter, Lisa Carolyn Ake, and her husband Tracy Ake, of Bristow, VA; grandchildren, Hayley Ake, Hannah Ake, and Sam Ake; a sister, Janice Elliott of Nashville, TN; and a brother, Frank Thrower of Dallas, TX.

In lieu of flowers, the family request donations be made in her name to All Souls Unitarian Church.

Messages of condolence may be sent to Lisa Murdock Ake, 9346 Angel Falls St., Bristow, VA  20136

The Rev. Marguerite “Peggy” C. Clason

The Rev. Marguerite “Peggy” C. Clason died on August 29, 2017, at the age of 76.

She is survived by her spouse of 54 years Don Clason; children Eric Clason (Victoria) and Christine Briedie (Mark); and grandchildren Nicholas, Natalie, and Lauren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the UU Society of Cleveland, 2728 Lancashire Rd, Cleveland, OH 44106; to East Shore UU Church, 10848 Chillicothe Rd, Kirtland, OH 44094; and to the Life Care fund of Ohio Living Breckenridge Village.

A memorial service was planned for 3 p.m. on Saturday, September 30, 2017 at East Shore UU Church (address above).

Notes of condolence can be sent to Don Clason at 5665 Grace Woods Drive, Unit 209, Willoughby, OH 44094.

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

The Rev. Rebecca “Becky” Morton Blodgett

The Rev. Rebecca “Becky” Morton Blodgett died on August 12, 2017 at the age of 84.

She is survived by her husband of 61 years Timothy Blodgett; children Sarah Blodgett, Amy Walker (Jonathan), Jeffrey Blodgett (Emily), and Katherine Blodgett; and eight grandchildren.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Concord Free Public Library, 129 Main St, Concord, MA 01742, in support of children’s services.

A memorial service will be held at 11am on Friday, September 29th at First Parish in Concord, 20 Lexington Road, Concord, MA 01742.

Notes of condolence can be sent to First Parish in Concord (address above).

A more complete obituary will be forthcoming after biographical research has been completed.

Ruth Elizabeth Lawrence

Ruth Lawrence

Ruth Lawrence

Ruth Elizabeth Lawrence, age 76 died July 30, 2017, in Morrisville, VT. She was the widow of the Reverend Thomas Ahlburn.

Ruth grew up in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, and attended Connecticut College, where she majored in English. She was hired by the Providence Public Library as a children’s librarian and earned her Masters in Library Science. She remained a librarian throughout her professional life, mostly in the Woonsocket, Rhode Island school system. She and her husband collected a personal library of over 10,000 titles, which included religion, poetry, biblical archeology, zoology, and astronomy. They read every book.

While living in Rhode Island, they spent their summers in Vermont, where they bought some land and built a cabin. They spent two months every summer there for 20 years. They loved the peaceful life, grew a lot of their food, cooked on a 2-burner Coleman stove, hauled water, and used kerosene lanterns.

Ruth’s home was filled with animals in need, many of which were brought in by her elementary school. Over the years, she cared for a three-legged dog, goats, a squirrel, geese, a starling, a blue jay and an ancient box turtle named Gino.

Tom and Ruth retired to Greensboro in 2000. After Tom died in 2002, Ruth invented a new life for herself in Greensboro. She was active with the Greensboro Free Library and her many new friends became a family. She moved to the Craftsbury Community Care Center several years ago, and was happy there.

Ruth is survived by her stepdaughters, Heather Emerick and Megan Ahlburn, her son-in-law, Donny Emerick and her grandchildren Winnie, Charlotte and Phoebe Emerick. She is also survived by her sisters Marjorie Seabury and Virginia Buttrum and their children.

Memorial contributions may be sent to the Craftsbury Community Care Center, 1784 E. Craftsbury Road, Craftsbury, VT 05827, or the Greensboro Free Library, 53 E. Craftsbury Road, Greensboro, VT 05841.

The Rev. Edwin “Ed” A. Lane

Ed Lane

Ed Lane

The Reverend Edwin “Ed” A. Lane—dedicated parish minister, bold and passionate activist for truth and social justice, supporter and volunteer for humanitarian causes, and devoted servant of liberal religion—died in hospice care on July 19, 2017, in Columbus, Ohio, at the age of 89.

The Rev. Mr. Lane was socially active throughout his life in a multitude of causes, ranging from civil rights to the environment. He protested against the Vietnam War and joined many of his colleagues in the 1965 Selma march. He actively supported women’s rights, abortion rights, and same sex marriage, and fought for income equality and environmental protections. His piece on gun control legislation won the Skinner Award for “Most Significant Sermon of Social Concern” in 1967. Twice he travelled to Africa to build houses with Habitat for Humanity. “Life is a gift of grace,” Ed Lane once wrote, “not something we have earned. We have a responsibility to use it with wisdom and to share it with love.”

Edwin A. Lane, born to Lester and Vera Lewis Lane on June 19, 1928, grew up on a hog farm in Kingman, Ohio. After graduation from Kingman High School in 1944 in a class of eight students, he went on to earn a B.A. from Wilmington College in 1951. Raised in the Methodist church, Ed pursued ministerial study at Drew University Divinity School but found and embraced Unitarianism while there, took his divinity degree in 1954, and was ordained on 12 May 1957 by the Church of the Unity (now UU Church of Winchendon, Mass) while serving his first ministry. He accepted a call as the first minister to the UU Church in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, and in nine years there (1958-67) he helped the small fellowship grow into a thriving church with over 400 members, twelve acres of land, and four congregational buildings. The Rev. Mr. Lane went on to settlements at UU churches in Westport, CT (1967-78?), Cambridge, MA (1978-87), an interim year in Bellingham, WA, and a final call to First Parish Waltham, MA (1987), where he was named Minister Emeritus on retiring in 1996.

Mr. Lane gave broad service to the wider UU movement. He chaired the editorial board of the Register Leader (now UU World) from 1957 to 1963 and sat on the board of Beacon Press for ten years (1962-72). It was during his term as chair of that board (1969-71) that the momentous decision was made for Beacon Press to publish the classified Pentagon Papers in 1971, detailing the United States’ involvement in the Vietnam War. During the subsequent controversy and lawsuit, his telephone was found to have been tapped. Other roles included membership on the Ministerial Fellowship Committee (1965-1969), Ministerial Consultant to the UU Service Committee (1961-1964), and leadership in the Massachusetts Bay Chapter of the UUMA.

Ed Lane

Ed Lane

Ed Lane wrote many articles for Church Management and edited the magazine from 1955 to 1957. As a public minister, his submissions of “letters to the editor” often appeared in The New York Times and The Boston Globe. Dedicated to the end, his final letter was published in the Times on 17 July 2017, just two days before his death.\

In retirement, as an active member of First Parish in Needham, MA, Ed often served as a guest preacher and congregational volunteer in adult religious education and on issues of social and racial justice. There he also became a model layperson, where his wildly popular homemade bread, key lime pie, and cheese pennies brought in many dollars for church fundraisers. In his spare time, Mr. Lane enjoyed acting, woodworking, bicycling, and hiking.

In their own obituary for Ed, family members recalled both his professional and personal character: “[Ed] was known as a caring, intelligent, wise, kind, loving minister with a great laugh and sense of humor. His sermons were memorable and thought-provoking. He helped nurture churches in their growth, and served as a cheerleader to those that needed it. … To his family he stands as a patient, loving, intelligent, kind, thoughtful, amazing and huggable husband, father, brother, uncle.”

Edwin Lane is survived by his wife of 28 years, Helen, two sons, four grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and one great-great grandchild.

Memorial donations are encouraged to First Parish in Needham, 23 Dedham Ave, Needham, MA 02492.

A memorial service was held on Saturday, September 30, 2017, at First Parish Needham.

Notes of condolence may be sent to HelenBLane@gmail.com and to 66 Hastings St. Apt 106, Wellesley, MA 02481.