Deceased November 15, 2018
Ted was born in Haddonfield, N.J. At Amherst we were roommates and became great friends. Following graduation, we pooled our resources and headed West in my rickety Plymouth station wagon, taking camping gear and the College directory. Running out of money in Texas, we worked on an oil rig there, then headed up the West Coast, staying with relatives and college friends. Out of money again, we became bus drivers in Lake Louise, Canada. Memories of that beautiful area eventually led Ted to accept a teaching job at the University of Alberta, following his M.A. in French at the University of Minnesota and Ph.D. in medieval studies at Rutgers University.
Ted had a full life and a distinguished career. He became a beloved professor of comparative literature and later headed the department, edited its journal and authored more than 30 books of poetry and dozens of literary essays. He became a skilled player of the lute. Ted spoke French and German and could read seven other languages. He was twice given the Governor General’s Award for poetry, named a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and appointed Distinguished University Professor of Comparative Literature.
As poet laureate of the City of Edmonton, he wrote Poems for a Small Park, some of which were engraved on metal straps in several languages and wrapped around lamp posts in a riverfront park. He founded the Writers Guild of Alberta, chaired the Edmonton Arts Council, sang in a choral group and was named to Edmonton’s Arts and Culture Hall of Fame.
Ted died in November 2018 from melanoma and is survived by his wife, Irena; three children; a stepson; and eight grandchildren. He was an exceptional friend and will be missed. (An extraordinary obituary from the Edmonton Globe and Mail is on Ted’s In Memory page on the College’s website.)
Jack Heise ’56