Bickel, Nickel, Magobern, Rhoades, Elmer, Lerner, Anderson

Noting the passing of prominent Pittsburghers
Elbie Nickel, Elizabeth Elmer, Dr. James A. Magovern Elbie Nickel, Elizabeth Elmer, Dr. James A. Magovern
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Minnette Bickel, 85: A national award-​winning portrait artist, Bickel painted hundreds of portraits of notable Pittsburghers and national figures. She would get a feel for the subject and then be guided by intuition. She was among the founders of Carnegie Museum’s Women’s Committee and was known as a charming, friendly and stylish person.


Elbie Nickel, 84

A three-​sport standout at the University of Cincinnati, Nickel was one of the Steelers’ all-​time great receivers. His Steelers career, from 1947 to 1957, included three Pro Bowl appearances and team records that stood for many years — including 62 receptions in a season and 329 career receptions.

Elizabeth Elmer, 96

Elmer was a national pioneer in the field of child-​abuse prevention, co-​founding the Parental Stress Center. A social worker in 1954, she noticed patients at Children’s Hospital with broken bones. The discovery spurred her 40 years of groundbreaking research, including books in 1967 and 1977. Family Resources still gives the annual Betty Elmer Award.

Mimi Lerner, 61

Lerner was an internationally known mezzo soprano. Her grandparents died in concentration camps in World War II, but her parents survived, ultimately coming to the U.S. She married a musician with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra who heard her voice and encouraged a musical career, which began late in life.

Mimi Lerner, 61

Lerner was an internationally known mezzo soprano. Her grandparents died in concentration camps in World War II, but her parents survived, ultimately coming to the U.S. She married a musician with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra who heard her voice and encouraged a musical career, which began late in life.

Cletus Anderson, 69

Anderson was a national leader in costume and set design, writing with his wife, Barbara, the widely used textbook “Costume Design.” He designed numerous productions himself, and as a longtime professor at Carnegie Mellon, Anderson taught generations of students who are making a national impact in theater, television and film.

Lawrence Rhoades, 62

Rhoades was an inventor, entrepreneur, adventurer and philanthropist. He founded the toolmaking company Extrude Hone, which employed more than 400 and was purchased two years ago by Kennametal for $137 million. He then founded technology firm Ex One, which has 150 employees. Credited with dozens of patents, he was a creative man who also helped others, serving as founding chairman of the Doyle Center for Manufacturing and Technology and as chairman of the nonprofit consulting firm Catalyst Connections. He also served on the board of the Pittsburgh Symphony and the Vintage Grand Prix Association.


PQ Staff

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