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Passages: Quaker Obituaries – March/April 2013

ORLOVA Galina Evgenievna Orlova, May 10, 1937 – December 23, 2012. On December 26, 2012 Moscow Quakers joined a Russian Orthodox congregation at the Church of the Holy Wonderworkers and Unmercenaries Cosmas and Damian at the Botkin Hospital, to mark the death of, and thank God for, Galina Orlova. Galina, who had died three days earlier, was one of the earliest Friends of the modern era in Russia.

British Friend Patricia Cockrell worked closely with Galina for many years, and gives this testimony to the grace of God in Galina’s life: As a teacher of Russian literature, Galina Orlova had come across Quakers (“they know how to bring peace”) in a story by Nikolai Leskov. This intrigued her and she asked a lot of questions when we met in Moscow in 1988. The books and leaflets I gave her in the next few years increased her interest but they also confused her.

She began attending the small Friends worship group in Moscow in 1992 but this too did not satisfy her, though she was pleased to find some Quaker literature in Russian. Galina became a convinced Friend the following year while studying at Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre in Birmingham, UK, where she haunted the library, took English lessons and had deep conversations with many Friends. She attended meeting for worship every morning and epilogue every evening, and she maintained this habit of daily silent worship for the rest of her life. Galina was accepted into membership of the Society and later served as clerk of Moscow Monthly Meeting. Galina was appointed staff person at Friends House Moscow at its opening on January 1, 1996.

She was well placed to nurture individual seekers and Quaker groups in the former Soviet Union, having decided to base her life on the Quaker testimonies after wrestling with her own spiritual growth. Guests to the office were welcomed with warmth and respect, and Galina travelled widely in support of many FHM projects, including children with special needs in Pskov, refugees in Krasnodar and victims of conflict in Chechnya. She also gave a good deal of time and energy over many years to the Alternatives to Violence Project, translating material, training facilitators and serving on the AVP Council.

Deeply committed to the aims of Friends House Moscow, Galina served for some years as a board member until poor health forced her to give up her employment in 2004. She then devoted herself to looking after her grandchild, Kirill, while coping with the increasingly distressing symptoms of Parkinson’s with courage and humility. Never seeking her own reward, Galina spoke her truth even when this was not convenient. She lived simply and had few personal needs. Galina used to say that she saw her time at Friends House Moscow as a “joyful learning experience,” with plenty of opportunity to nourish others and to explore her own spiritual journey.Galina is survived by her son Gleb Krasnovskii and grandson Kirill. Her husband, Ernst Abramovich Krasnovskii, preceded her in death in 2008.

TAYLOR Richard Wirth Taylor, a member of Oberlin Friends Meeting (LEYM), died peacefully at the age of 89 on 6 October 2012, in the company of Friends. He was born on 15 January 1923 in Cleveland, Ohio to Irmgard Wirth and Robert Gray Taylor. His parents met when they were both doing hunger relief work with the American Friends Service Committee after World War I in Germany, Irmgard’s native land. For the first 13 years of his life, Richard lived alternately in German and English, Germany and Philadelphia. He attended the Waldschule in Kronberg im Taunus for a momentous two years in 1935-36, and witnessed first-hand the cancerous growth of the racialist police state under the National Socialists.

In Philadelphia, he attended the new School in Rose Valley, a Friends school his parents had co-founded, and then Westtown Friends School, from which he graduated in 1941. After Westtown, he attended Guilford College in Greensboro, North Carolina, where he met Sadie White, the love of his life. A conscientious objector, he did Civilian Public Service during World War II, doing conservation work and providing health care to mental patients. On 19 September, 1946, he and Sadie married under the joint care of Bethel Friends Meeting (Friends United Meeting) and Arch Street Meeting (Philadelphia Yearly Meeting).

They renewed their marriage in the manner of Friends in their beloved Colorado on the occasion of their 60th anniversary in 2006. Together they sang, studied, camped, Quaker work-camped, bickered, laughed, raised four children, climbed mountains, marched on Washington (and elsewhere too), taught, travelled, and loved each other for 64 years until Sadie’s death in 2010.After CPS and marriage, Richard earned his BA, MA, and PhD from the University of Illinois in political science, and embarked on a career teaching political theory and philosophy at many colleges, eventually retiring from Kent State University in 1973. As a researcher in political science, he was primarily interested in non-governmental influences on government and in conflict resolution and put theory into practice as a Friend in Washington for the Friends Committee on National Legislation in 1963-64. He worked to inform and persuade members of congress and senators to support the legislation that eventually became the 1964 Civil Rights Act, and travelled tirelessly to keep Friends around the country abreast of the momentous developments in the struggle (legislative and otherwise) for racial justice.

Richard’s engagement with Quaker peacework and civil rights continued throughout his life. In addition to civil rights, he was especially committed to anti-war and disarmament work, and advised many young people about conscientious objection during the many wars of his lifetime. Throughout his life, he also maintained his interest in German politics and European models of conflict resolution, travelling frequently to interview ombudsmen and government officials responsible for responding to citizen petitions (memorable example: a Swiss petitioner who, after an evidently long series of prior complaints, objected to having been characterized by an offending bureaucrat as “an old billygoat”: “der Beamte habe ihn betadelt, er sei ein alter Ziegenbock”).

Richard had an extraordinary knack for being in the right place at the right (or at least interesting) time: after witnessing the birth of Nazism and the 1964 Civil Rights Act, in 1990 he and Sadie also journeyed to Leipzig on a university exchange, where they marched for regime change and were present at “die Wende”—the collapse of the East German government and the peaceful reunification of Germany. Here, as everywhere they went, they made lifelong friends. After retirement, Richard and Sadie were among the first residents of the new Kendal at Oberlin Quaker retirement community, where they were active and beloved members of the Friends Meeting and the residential community.

As long as he was able, Richard continued to write letters against the death penalty and to stand on street corners and witness for peace at Oberlin’s weekly vigils. He is survived by sister Sylvia Fen, son Peter (Kathleen Wilson Taylor), daughter Karla (Gary Beckman), son Mark, and son Stephen (Linda Taylor); by nine grandchildren: Jordan Taylor (Mariana Garretson), Anika Taylor, No’am Taylor, Lotem Taylor, Or Yochai Taylor, Moriah Taylor, Yonatan Taylor, MacKinzi Taylor, and Dakota Taylor; and by one great-granddaughter: Greta Garretson Taylor.

YOUNG Daniel Young was a quiet and thoughtful man who was a member of Pima Monthly Meeting of Tucson, Arizona. He was a very intelligent man who had strong beliefs, but was able to discuss things in a gentle way and listened intently to differing opinions. As a member of the Clearness Committee for Membership and Marriage, Dan could get to the heart of a discussion and help the group come up with good plans for how to proceed. On a personal level, Dan accepted people for who they were and valued their friendship. He always would smile with his eyes! He loved his wife Joy so very much and always wanted to be with her.

Dan and Joy spent a lot of time reaching out to members of the meeting who needed help or support. They were truly good about visiting and keeping in touch with Friends who were sick or unable to come to Meeting. Daniel Test Young was born a birthright Quaker on August 21, 1923 in Kansas City, Missouri to Mildred Binns Young and Wilmer Job Young. When he was two he lived in Poland as his parents worked with American Friends Service Committee for a boys’ orphanage. He returned with them to Westtown School, in West Chester, PA, where his father taught math and physics and was Dean of Boys.

Dan attended Westtown School for all of his elementary education through eighth grade. He described Westtown campus as an “idyllic” place for him and his younger siblings Gretka and Bill to grow up. In the middle of the Depression in 1936, Dan moved with his family to Mississippi as they took up voluntary poverty to help work with sharecroppers at the Delta Cooperative Farm. After attending public high school in Mississippi for one year, Daniel returned to Westtown School until he graduated. From there, he attended Guilford College, living with President and Mrs. Milner in exchange for yard work and acting as their chauffeur. During World War II, Daniel, a conscientious objector, was drafted and entered into Civilian Public Service (CPS), serving as a night watchman, cooking, and maintaining trails at Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

Planning toward medical school, Dan asked to transfer to the New Hampshire State Mental Hospital, where he worked as an orderly. After CPS, Daniel attended a two year program at University of North Carolina (UNC) School of Medicine, transferring to Harvard to complete his medical education. After completing his training in cardiology, he began his career as a professor of medicine and a practicing cardiologist at the UNC Chapel Hill School of Medicine, where he remained until retiring in 1990. In 1949, he married his first wife, the late Maria Alston Young. They had three children, John, Nancy and Maria (Rie).

They were active in the American Civil Liberties Union, protesting the Vietnam War and working for civil rights. At the same time, Dan served on the board of the American Friends Service Committee, SE Region for six years. After his first marriage ended in divorce, Dan married Joy Carder in 1979, adding to his family her two children, Heather and Travis. Dan was an avid sailor. In 1983 Dan and Joy undertook a five year project building their 27 foot sailboat. They enjoyed sailing it at the North Carolina coast for many years. Besides sailing, Dan loved to bike, garden, hike, canoe, build furniture, and was also an avid reader. In 1983, Dan continued to pursue his convictions for peace and social concerns by becoming a member of the board of Physicians for Social
Responsibility (PSR). He worked with this board for 10 years, serving as its president in 1991.

During Dan’s years with PSR, he and Joy did a great deal of international travel to countries such as Japan, Finland, and Kazakhstan, as well as to other parts of Europe and what was then the Soviet Union. In 1995, and again in 1997, Dan and Joy continued working for world peace by traveling to Nicaragua and Guatemala with Witness for Peace. After Dan and Joy retired in 1990 they traveled extensively in the US, Canada and Mexico in their motor home, seeing wonderful sights and visiting friends and family.

Through the years, Daniel has been a member of several different Friends Meetings. While in Tucson, Dan served on the Committee for Clearness for Membership and Marriage, and together Dan and Joy did pastoral care under Ministry and Oversight. They also clerked the Kitchen Committee and helped with homeless hospitality. Dan left this world peacefully on October 25, 2012 at the age of 89. He is survived by his wife Joy Carder Young of Tucson, AZ; his children John Young, Nancy Young, Rie Young Jones and husband Larry Jones, Heather McCabe Lutz and husband David Lutz; his grandchildren, Alex and Erik Lutz; his sister, Gretka Young Wolfe and husband, Ralph Wolfe and brother, William Young. He was preceded in death by his first wife, Maria Alston Young and his stepson, Travis McCabe.

Comments

  1. Linda Garrison said:

    It is lovely that these obituaries are available online; I often get the idea I would have enjoyed the company of many of these Friends, We are indeed surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.

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