Dick Goddard: A brief remembrance

Dick Goddard: 1931 – 2020

Broadcast meteorology icon Dick Goddard passed away August 4, 2020 at age 89 after battling illness. In addition to being a legendary weather forecaster in Cleveland, and a noted advocate for animal welfare, many remember him as inspiring them to look up. CAA member Jay Reynolds shared some thoughts on Goddard and astronomy.

Sure, Dick had the longest TV meteorologist career in history.*

His accomplishments are many.

{In} his first weather segments, in the early 1960s, he knew there may be not enough to talk about. His director suggested that talk about something, trivia or whatever.  He started looking up trivia, which also included astronomy.

Dick Goddard at the 2012 Transit of Venus event.

For decades, if time permitted, he would always throw out something interesting for viewers to see.

Always hungry for a chance to interact with people, just ask him, he’d come to events or included others in them.

He attended the CAA’s “2012 Transit of Venus Event” at Edgewater Park (7,500 people). Also spoke at Cleveland Astronomical Society.

He always pushed astronomy, science to anyone who would listen.

He loved to make those connections.

Jay Reynolds is Research Astronomer at Cleveland State University, director of the CAA’s Observatory, and a member of the CAA Board of Trustees.

*Dick Goddard holds the Guinness World Record for longest career as a weather forecaster after passing Canadian meteorologist Peter Coade. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dick_Goddard

Charles Grace dies at age 94

Charles H. Grace, 1926 – 2020

Charles Henry Grace, 94, died peacefully in his sleep of natural causes on July 14, 2020, at his home in Lakewood, Ohio. Charles was a prominent figure in the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association (CAA) and an honorary Life Member.

Born Feb. 20, 1926, in Dayton, Ohio, he was the second of three sons to John Wesley Grace and Esther Wilkening Grace. He and his late brothers, Nelson and Donald, all enjoyed long, productive lives, with each living into his nineties.

Charles was a bit of a Renaissance man: a scholar, engineer, lawyer, inventor, musician, author, amateur astronomer, and lover of classical music, language and poetry. In fact, he embodied his favorite poem, “Invictus” by 19th century English poet William Ernest Henley, which concludes with: “I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” Invictus, which means “unconquerable” or “undefeated” in Latin, is about courage in the face of death, and holding on to one’s own dignity despite the indignities life places before us.

Charles, who still could recite the entire poem in his final months, did just that, keeping his wit and eternal optimism even while confronted with failing eyesight, hearing, and overall health.

He earned a doctoral degree in electrical engineering from Carnegie Institute of Technology in Pittsburgh. He seldom used the “Dr.” title he had earned, however, since he considered it pretentious. He founded his own company, Grace Electronics, in Cleveland, where he developed a photometer that measured the intensity of light and was used in the U.S. space program.

A disciplined goal-setter, he placed a triangular wooden carving on his desk that stated: “Plan the Work & Work the Plan.”

Always a student, he employed an extensive collection of handwritten flashcards to study for the bar exam at home at night while running his company. He passed the bar and added a juris doctorate degree from Cleveland State University to his electronics career.

Leveraging his engineering, electronics and legal knowledge, he then transitioned into law full time and rose to serve as general patent counsel for the multinational industrial conglomerate Eaton Corp. for many years. He ran their European law offices in the late 1970s, stationed in London, England, before returning to the U.S. in 1981 to oversee Eaton’s mid-U.S. law offices.

Charles has patented inventions, including a self-tuning electronic saxophone, and in August 2010, at the age of 84, self-published a book entitled Astronomy: Selected Topics. As a lover of astronomy, he wrote a monthly article called “Looking Up” in the CAA’s newsletter, “The Observer”, where he explained astronomical subjects in everyday language. He was the author of the CAA’s club By-Laws.

In addition to the astronomy club, he was a member of many intellectual groups, including Mensa, Rotary, Socrates, and an exclusive men’s book club, as well as many church clubs. He was a long-time, active member of the West Shore Unitarian Universalist Church in Rocky River, Ohio, and considered many fellow parishioners there to be his second family.

Charles for more than a quarter century was married to his beloved Marian E. (Banfer) Grace, who passed away in 1991 at age 67. They are survived by their three children: Kathy (Charlie Vaughn); Linda (Joseph Arney); and Bob (Gabriela Ferreira), who all now live in Florida.

Later in life, Charles was partners first with Patty Peters, who passed away in 2010 at age 86, and then with Margery Ventresca, who preceded him in death by eight months.

Charles always enjoyed the companionship of witty people and kept a social calendar that would exhaust someone half his age. He hosted many parties for friends at his condo in Winton Place, on Lakewood’s Gold Coast, overlooking Lake Erie and the Cleveland skyline. These gatherings typically included guest participation activities, musical entertainment, poem readings, dinner invocations, and the like.

In the final year of his life, despite his various daily hardships, he was always the gentleman, and he was particularly grateful for the kind, attentive assistance (and delicious, home-cooked meals) provided by the caregivers at Daughters With Degrees. May we all share his thirst for knowledge and self-improvement.

In lieu of flowers, feel free to make a donation in the name of Charles H. Grace to the Case Western Reserve University Alumni Case Fund https://www.casealum.org/casefund, the SmileTrain http://www.smiletrain.org/donate/ways-donate, or to the charity of your choice.

Deaths: Ray A. Paul

We are sorry to report the passing of Ray A. Paul, husband of past CAA president Lynn (Laux) Paul. We offer our condolences to Lynn and her family and friends. Ray was active in amateur astronomy in Cleveland and in Akron, where he served as observatory director of the astronomy club of Akron. Ray and Lynn were very active amateur astronomers and experienced astro-photographers. They enjoyed trips together out West for stargazing and photography.

Ray, age 65, was a U.S. Army Vietnam veteran and Bronze Star recipient. Services were held at St. Peter and Paul Church in Doylestown, OH. Burial was in the Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery.

The following obituary was published in The Cleveland Plain Dealer on March 5, 2012:

PAUL RAY A. PAUL, age 65. Beloved husband of Lynn (nee Kuhel). Loving father of Ryan Paul, Katherine Laux and Christopher Laux. Dearest son of Claire (nee Trunk) and the late Stanley Paul. Dear brother of Anita Stanners (Bob), Elaine Paul-Muelas, Jeff Paul (Linda) and Robert Paul (Tina). Dear son in law of Jim and Irene Kuhel. Also survived by aunts, uncle, nieces, nephews, great nephews, cousins and many dear friends. U.S. Army Vietnam Veteran and Bronze Star recipient. Member of Cuyahoga Astronomical Association and former observatory director of the astronomy club of Akron. Mass of Christian Burial Wednesday March 7, 2012 St. Peter & Paul Church, 161 W. Clinton St., Doylestown, Ohio at 11:00 AM. Final Resting Place Ohio Western Reserve National Cemetery. Arrangements entrusted to the A. RIPEPI & SONS FUNERAL HOME, 18149 BAGLEY ROAD, MIDDLEBURG HEIGHTS, OHIO 44130, 440-260-8800 (WEST OF I-71).

Deaths: Al Panzer, club co-founder, 84

Long-time member and co-founder of the Cuyahoga Astronomical Association, Alexander (“Al”) A. Panzer died Friday, Oct. 28. He was 84.

Panzer had a deep interest and love for astronomy, especially solar observing and telescope building. He built several large telescopes and donated some of his equipment for use at the CAA’s observatory. He was also active in amateur (“ham”) radio; he was W8ZEP.

Visitation will take place Tuesday, Nov. 1, from 4 to 7:45 PM, with a closing service at 7:45 PM at the Zabor Funeral Home, 5680 Pearl Road, Parma. If desired, please meet at Lake View Cemetery, (Euclid entrance) for a brief committal service on Wednesday, Nov. 2 at 1:15 PM.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Hospice of the Western Reserve.

Click the following link to read the obituary published in The Plain Dealer.