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Playwriting is often a quick route to the poorhouse, but Dr. Mona Grey, a veteran nurse, actually raised funds that way. We suspect it had to do with her "enormous energy, a forceful character and great charm that made it impossible for people to refuse her. She would underline their resistance by blowing a kiss and say: 'Darling, we need your help.' "

John A. Eddy, rightly dubbed the Solar Detective, was unafraid to combine his scientific research with explorations into history. By using both skills, he discovered that the sun's cycle is not as steady as, say, the tides, but its activity can vary. (He also explained the Bighorn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming).

Hugh R. Manes fought the law when few challenged police brutality in LA. A retired judge said he was "probably one of the finest" advocates for police-abuse victims in Southern California.

Bill Hemmerling took up serious painting only seven years ago, yet his work hung with Salvador Dali's and at Art Expo New York. If you've been to Jazz Fest in New Orleans, you might recognize him or his work.

C.B.T. Smith was a preacher's preacher -- an energetic talker in the African-American celebration tradition, his schedule was packed, even up to when he died at age 93.


Thanks to Martin Clemens (and a few other coastwatchers), Australia and New Zealand were not cut off by the Japanese during World War II.

Finally, we have two good ones in the Washington Post today: the first American woman in Antarctica, and the former principal of that uniquely Washington institution, the Capitol Page School.

By Patricia Sullivan |  June 18, 2009; 9:03 AM ET  | Category:  The Daily Goodbye
Previous: From D.C. to Antarctica | Next: Spotlight: Ethan Zohn

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