In Memoriam

May 7, 2020

LUCY BATES-BYERS, an alumna, educator and researcher, died on Feb. 5, 2019. A Lansing School District teacher for 24 years, Bates-Byers worked with the MSU Institute for Research on Teaching and Learning in the 1970s and 1980s as a teacher collaborator. In this role, she worked half-time on research projects, and continued teaching half-time. Later in her career, Bates-Byers worked with Teacher Preparation Program students during their internship placements as a field instructor. She and her husband established the Joe L. Byers & Lucy Bates-Byers Endowment for Technology and Curriculum to support innovative faculty research and scholarship.

THOMAS D. BIRD, associate professor emeritus of teacher education, died on Oct. 1, 2019. Bird joined the faculty in 1989 and retired in 2011. He was a dedicated teacher, a central figure in the college’s work to prepare new teachers and a thought leader in the field.

Former faculty member RICHARD B. FETTERS died on June 1, 2019. He came to MSU in 1962 as a swimming coach, and later founded the Spartan Swim Club. Highlights during his time as coach include a number of Big Ten Conference champions, All-American swimmers and national champions. He was at MSU for 26 years, including nearly 20 as an adjunct associate professor.

WILMA GILLESPIE died on Jan. 17, 2019. She taught high school in Detroit for many years before joining the College of Education as an assistant professor from 1970 through retirement in 1995. During her time at MSU, she taught overseas graduate study programs in the Philippines, Thailand, Japan and Korea, among other locations. 

Professor emeritus and longtime administrator LOUIS HEKHUIS died on Aug. 25, 2019. A three-time MSU graduate—including master’s and doctoral degrees from the College of Education—Hekhuis was part of the higher education administration faculty from 1962-95. He also spent 25 years as associate dean of students at MSU. He earned a Crystal Apple Award, honoring educators at MSU, in 2002.

HARRY G. JUDGE died on April 2, 2019. An instrumental figure in teacher education research, policy and practice, Judge served as a visiting education policy professor beginning in 1988 after many years at Oxford University. Among his publications, in 1982, he wrote “A View from Abroad: A Report to the Ford Foundation,” an examination of several U.S. research universities and schools of education. He also was a consultant to the Holmes Group—a coalition of scholars concentrated on education reform. In 1994, he was lead author of “The University and the Teachers: France, the United States and England,” with co-authors Michael Lemosse, Lynn Paine and Michael Sedlak. 

BRUCE MITCHELL died on Jan. 11, 2019. He joined MSU in 1972, and was part of the College of Education faculty from 1977 through his retirement in 2002. His main areas of interest were in mathematics education. In addition to helping prepare future teachers, Mitchell co-developed a Lansing-area mathematics learning opportunity for middle school students to explore various mathematics topics.

The first MSU faculty member to be hired in the area of exercise physiology, HENRY MONTOYE, died on Oct. 29, 2019. He was part of the Department of Physical Education, Health and Recreation from 1949-61. In the early 1950s, he established the Human Energy Research Lab (HERL), which continues today under the direction of Professor James Pivarnik. His career took him to other institutions before returning to MSU in the mid-1990s as an adjunct professor. Among his accolades, he was a fellow and one-time president of the National Academy of Kinesiology. In 1990, he received NAK’s highest recognition, the Hetherington Award. In addition, he and his wife established the Henry J. and Betty Montoye Endowed Scholarship to support Kinesiology doctoral students in their research.

Photos courtesy of University Archives (Hekhuis, Montoye, Fetters).