Douglas R. Price W51, a businessman, inventor, historian and writer who had been an aide to President Dwight D. Eisenhower, died on his 87th birthday of complications from Parkinson’s disease at the Blakehurst Retirement Community in Towson. The son of W. James Price III, a partner at Alex. Brown & Sons, and Frances Robbins Price, a homemaker, Douglas Robbins Price was born and raised in Ruxton. After graduating from the Gilman School in 1947, he earned a bachelor’s degree in 1951 in economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania.
In 1951, he joined the Eisenhower for President campaign and was press assistant to the future president at the 1952 Republican Convention in Chicago. As a member of Mr. Eisenhower’s personal campaign staff, Mr. Price traveled aboard the campaign train as it crisscrossed the country. He enjoyed telling friends: “When I first met Eisenhower, he was a retired Army officer. When I finished my mission, he was president of the United States. That’s the kind of work I do.” In a 2006 article in The Baltimore Sun about presidential swearing, Mr. Price recalled that Mr. Eisenhower “cursed privately on occasion, but only in light blue, not dark four-letter words.” “Anyone who made the mistake of using scatological or vulgar language in Ike’s presence regretted it, as did any one of his friends who made the mistake of telling an off-color story. Eisenhower had too much respect for the presidency,” Mr. Price said. He recalled what it was like when someone annoyed President Eisenhower, earning a dose of presidential enmity. Mr. Price said he once tarried to get a last-minute shot of the presidential plane with his new movie camera—and was the last person to board as the door was shut. The president greeted him “with the nonverbal presidential stare that was coolly delivered and burned like a blowtorch.” “I didn’t ever do that again,” said Mr. Price. “He didn’t have to say anything. He could reprimand you severely with those cold blue steel eyes of his. They could penetrate right through you.” After working at the Republican National Committee, the International Cooperation Administration and the U.S. Commission on Government Security, Mr. Price was named a special assistant to the president and joined the White House staff in 1957. After President Eisenhower left office in 1961, Mr. Price co-founded Atlantic Development Co., an international marketing and sales firm, which recently closed. In addition to his own business career, Mr. Price served as chairman of the board of the Baltimore-based Vanns Spices Ltd.
A longtime resident of Rock Hall and Chestertown, Mr. Price was a familiar sight on the Chesapeake Bay and the Intracoastal Waterway as he sailed his twin-diesel-powered cabin cruiser, the Francina, between Maryland, the Florida Keys and the Bahamas. Mr. Price was a member of the Corsica River Yacht Club and the Magothy River Sailing Association. He also held two patents on maritime safety and navigation devices. “He had invented a channel finder that measured the water and depth on both sides of a channel, which aided a mariner to safely stay in deep water,” said a nephew, Jonathan Price of Cockeysville. In 1977, Mr. Price filed suit against the state Department of Natural Resources, seeking an injunction forbidding state officials and Gov. Marvin Mandel to use the Prowler, an unmarked Marine Police patrol boat, for “personal pleasure.” The suit ended in a consent decree that ended the use of the Prowler for the entertainment and pleasure of state officials. “The injunction set a powerful precedent in Maryland, showing that a taxpayer can stop officials from diverting public funds to their own personal use,” Mr. Price said at the time.
He served as a member of the editorial advisory board of the Dwight David Eisenhower Papers at the Johns Hopkins University, and was on the board of the Eisenhower Institute and the Eisenhower Foundation. Mr. Price’s favorite hobby was collecting and writing about presidential and White House trivia and stories. In an unpublished monograph about then-General Eisenhower’s supposed wartime affair with Kay Summersby, an English woman who was his driver, Mr. Price relied on the recollections of Sgt. Mickey McKeough, who was the general’s orderly. “That stuff about an affair with Kay is sheer nonsense,” he said Sergeant McKeough told him. “I put the boss to bed every night, and there was no one else in the bed. In the mornings when I would wake him up, there was no one else in the bed, except the one time I found Telek, his black Scotty, on his pillow.” Mr. Price told The Sun it was time for educators, journalists, biographers and historians to put that “baseless old rumor to rest.”
Since 2015, Mr. Price had lived at the Towson retirement community. He was a member of the Elkridge Club and the Metropolitan Club of Washington. A memorial service was held in the chapel of the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer, 5603 N. Charles St. In addition to his nephew, Mr. Price is survived by a brother, W. James Price IV of Towson; a sister, Dorsey Price Salerno of Maplewood, NJ; and several other nieces and nephews.
Bruce Samuel Davidson W52 passed away peacefully on April 1, 2016, in NYC with his beloved children, grandchildren and dear friend Sharon by his side. Bruce was born on July 28, 1931, in Norwalk, CT. Bruce was the only child of Pearle Davidson (nee Rosenthal) and Dr. Emanuel Davidson. Throughout his life, Bruce was passionate about social justice and dedicated to the less fortunate. Bruce graduated from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. He then enlisted in the United States Army. He served in Korea shortly before the end of the conflict. He was honorably discharged after returning the U.S. and completed a Master of Science from the University of Bridgeport. He met Doris Lindner and they were married in 1956. The couple moved to the Riverdale section of the Bronx, NY, in 1966 where he resided until his passing. Dory Davidson (nee Lindner) passed away in 1989. Bruce was a beloved history teacher in Norwalk, at George Washington High School in Manhattan and then at John F. Kennedy High School in the Bronx for many years. He retired in the 1987 to pursue his hobbies. Those hobbies were, and in time grew to include: traveling, playing and teaching bridge, spoiling his children and grandchildren and collecting stamps, coins and first day covers. Somewhere, Bruce is still actively rooting for the Chicago Cubs to win the World Series – as he did throughout his life. He is survived by his son, Douglas (Plainview, NY,) daughter and son-in-law Julie Davidson Meyers and Jonathan Meyers (Lawrenceville, NJ,) and four wonderful grandchildren. Grandsons: Daniel and Adam Davidson and granddaughters: Dylan and Aliya Meyers. The family wishes acknowledge the love and assistance of Sharon Bailey who helped Bruce through the last eight years of his life and was unbelievably supportive to Bruce and his kids during the later years of his life. While Bruce may be gone, his generous heart and love for his grandchildren lives on. Memorial donations may be directed to a legacy fund Bruce established that allows his grandchildren to make a philanthropic gift to charity every year on their birthday.
John F. R. Smilgin III W53, a retired senior executive at the New York Life Insurance Company, passed away peacefully in his sleep on Tuesday, June 7, at his home in Manhattan. He is survived by his two sons, John Smilgin of Seattle, Caleb Smilgin of Manhattan, his former spouse, Carol Hill Smilgin of Osterville, MA, and his sister, Lorraine Spadaro of Syracuse, NY. John was born on March 8, 1926, in Syracuse, the son of John and Frances Smilgin. He enlisted in the United States Navy in 1944, at age 17 and was honorably discharged in 1946. He attended the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, graduating with the class of 1953. At Penn John was a member of the Delta Tau Delta fraternity and the Mask and Wig club. He attended the Law School at New York University, graduating in 1959 with a Juris Doctor degree. John was admitted to the New York Bar, First Judicial District in 1959. John married Margaret Carol Hill on June 1, 1957, at St. Theresa’s Church in Summit, NJ. They had two children, John F. R Smilgin IV and Caleb Hill Smilgin. John was first employed by the New York Life Insurance Company on March 9, 1953, where he spent his entire professional career, retiring as a corporate vice president on November 30, 1987. He was a member of the University Club for over 40 years, joining the U.C. in 1975. John joined the Penn Club of New York as a charter member in 1996, and he spent many happy summers as a member of the Lawrence Beach Club on Long Island. His long association with the Church of St. Thomas More in Manhattan began in 1970. He became head usher in 1985; a position he held until his death. A Memorial Mass for John was held on Saturday, Oct. 15, at St. Thomas More.
Thomas Edward Madden WG58, of Saratoga, CA, died at home, surrounded by family, on Dec. 16, 2015. The cause was congestive heart failure. He is survived by his loving wife of 40 years, Dorothy Madden, eight children and stepchildren, 18 grandchildren, and four great grandchildren. Tom was born on April 9, 1932, to Florence (Dampman) Madden and Lee Madden, in Freeport, IL. He received a Bachelor of Science in General Engineering from the University of Illinois (Urbana, IL) in 1954. Tom served in the U.S. Navy from July, 1954, until June, 1956, where he held the rank of lieutenant. After completing his service, he received an MBA from the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania.
In 1958 Tom married his first wife, Julia Powers, with whom he had four children: Thomas Madden (Maureen), Geri Derendinger (Denis), Stephen Madden (Inés) and Daniel Madden (Rosann). He started his career in New Jersey at Procter & Gamble, and later worked at a number of firms in the Santa Clara Valley, such as VSL Corporation in Los Gatos, CA, and CXR Telecom in Fremont, CA. He also had his own company for a short time in the late 1960’s. Tom retired in 1999. In 1975 Tom married Dorothy Ester, and with her gained four stepchildren: Laurel Glaros (Stephen), Gregory Ester (Marion), Jennifer Waddell (Scott) and Jeffrey Ester (Carol). Tom enjoyed family gatherings, fine dining, attending the theater and the symphony — which he often shared with his children and grandchildren — and most of all world travel. He was a natural born globetrotter. In college, he drove with friends from Illinois to the (then) Territory of Alaska. Upon his return, he regaled the local Freeport Kiwanis Club with slides from his trip. Serving in the U.S. Navy offered Tom an opportunity to see the rest of the world for the very first time, and he quickly caught the travel bug. His children fondly remember being packed into a station wagon for trips to national parks, dude ranches, Disneyland (many times), as well as Lake Tahoe for skiing. In retirement, Tom and Dorothy traveled the world, including tours to Russia, The Great Pyramids, New Zealand, Europe, China and Indonesia. Tom will always be remembered as a loving husband, caring father, skilled handyman, and avid traveler. He will be greatly missed.
David R. Willour WG64, was born in Wooster, OH, on Feb. 28, 1939, and died on Feb. 27, 2016, at the Worcestershire Royal Hospital, England. He is survived by his sister, Myra Novak; by Judy Willour, his wife of over 40 years; by his two sons, Geoffrey and Douglas; and by his grandchildren, Isaac Willour (son of Geoffrey and his wife, Sharon), and Ryan and Colin Willour (sons of Douglas Willour). He received his Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Political Science from the College of Wooster in Wooster, OH, and his MBA degree in Banking and Finance from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. In his professional life he was a seasoned and successful financial executive, holding high positions in a number of banking institutions, including Mellon Bank, Bank of New England, Chase Manhattan Bank and Advest Bank. A lifelong anglophile, he spent his later retirement years as a permanent resident in England. A funeral service was held in his honor on March 16, 2016, at the St. Leonard’s Parish Church in Bretforton, England, where his ashes were interred in the churchyard.
Loren Glenn Smith WG65 of Madison, CT, died on July 2, 2015. Born May 1, 1941, to Ruth Hadley and Glenn W. Smith, in Minneola, NY, he was raised in Madison, NJ. Loren graduated from Wesleyan University in 1963 and was a member of the Delta Kappa Epsilon fraternity. He earned an MBA from Wharton Business School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1965 and was an active member in the Philadelphia First City Troop National Guard from 1966-1970. Loren had an extensive career as a marketing executive at J.C. Penney in Dallas; Great Oak Financial Services, Longmeadow, MA, Citicorp, NYC, and as an independent consultant. He went on to passionately share his marketing expertise in the classroom as a visiting and adjunct professor at Fairfield University and University of Liverpool. Loren enjoyed playing the guitar, volunteering as an historical interpreter (Blacksmith) in Old City Park, Dallas, playing tennis & paddle, and spending time with his family. In 2004 he published “Flame of Love,” the culmination of years of work to create the most accurate translation of poetry by the Spanish Mystics St. Teresa of Avila and St. John of the Cross, paying special attention to the rhythmic and metric integrity of the poems. Loren continued to revise this and write other unpublished works. Loren leaves behind his devoted wife of 51 years, Joan, and his brother Ronald; Loren’s son, Christopher, his wife Marianne, and their daughters Ella, Annabelle and Lila; and Loren’s daughter, Polly Smith Bauer, her husband, Chris and their daughters, Caroline, Elizabeth and Alexandra. A funeral service was held at Saint Andrews Church, Madison. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Madison Emergency Medical Services or The Madison Historical Society. To sign the online guestbook, please visit hawleylincolnmemorial.com.
James David Dougherty WG65, of Hamden, CT, Marblehead, MA, Larchmont, NY, and Brunswick, ME, died of complications from pneumonia on Jan. 26, 2016, in his final home in Portland, OR. Jim was the first member of his family to graduate from college, Colgate University in Hamilton, NY, in 1961. He went on to graduate school, earning a Master of Business Administration from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School in 1965. Following service with the U.S. Army and 10 years in sales and marketing jobs with Procter & Gamble and Gillette, Jim entered a long career as a securities analyst for a number of Wall Street banks. In his spare time, he was an accomplished amateur ice hockey referee, working in leagues surrounding Westchester County, NY, from the 1970s through the 1990s, retiring as the oldest official in the system. Despite a career that placed him in boardrooms around the world, he was always the kid from Hamden. Jim’s friends came from all walks of life. He was fiercely loyal, especially to the Hamden High crew, the Colgate Dekes and the gang from his beloved Marblehead, MA that he left in person in 1973 but never in his heart. After retiring in 2002, he explored his passion for Irish history and culture by earning a master’s degree in Irish history from Manhattanville College. In 2004, he and his wife, Julie, bought and renovated an historic house in Brunswick, ME, where he had many opportunities to learn about Brunswick’s civil war hero Joshua Chamberlain and the civil war while enjoying all that Maine has to offer. A lifelong hockey fan, he passionately followed his alma mater, Colgate University, as well as the Boston Bruins, reveling in their championship seasons in the early 1970s as well as their return to the top in 2011. He is survived by his wife of 53 years, Julia Hillman Dougherty, son Sean Dougherty (Julie Atinaja), daughter Molly Dougherty (Cliff Alton), brother Bill Dougherty (Kristi Muro-Dougherty), nephew Mateo Muro-Dougherty, and his adored grandchildren, Erin and Connor Alton Dougherty. His love for his family knew no bounds. Jim was a deeply committed husband, parent, grandparent and friend. He will be missed.
Published in the Fall 2016 issue of Wharton Magazine.