[An-lang] Sad tidings

Byron W. Bender bender at hawaii.edu
Fri Jul 4 01:30:13 UTC 2003

  Dr. Donald M. Topping, 73, of Huntington, West Virginia, died June 29,
2003 at his home in Manoa. Dr. Topping was Professor Emeritus of Linguistics
at the University of Hawai'i (having been a founding member of the
department in 1963). He also served as the director of the Pacific and Asian
Linguistics Institute from 1969-1974, and as the director of the Social
Science Research Institute from 1974-1996, and was affiliated with the
Department of Sociology and the Pacific Islands Studies program. His
research areas included Micronesian languages, social change in the Pacific
islands, language and cognition, telecommunications policy, and drugs and
  He is best known for his basic research on the Chamorro language of Guam
and the Northern Marianas (Spoken Chamorro, 1969; Chamorro Reference
Grammar, 1973; and Chamorro-English Dictionary [with Pedro Ogo and Bernadita
Dungca], 1975), and for spearheading the Bilingual Education Project,
Micronesia, that saw similar works produced for other languages of
  In 1993, Dr. Topping co-founded the Drug Policy Forum of Hawai'i and
served as its president until April 2003 when he was awarded the
organization's Ho'omaluhia ("Peacemaker") Award for 10 years of leadership
devoted to drug policy reform in Hawai'i. He is survived by his wife,
Priscilla; sons Miles Topping, Lee Minh Topping, and Jason Kesolei;
daughters Dee Johnson and Leslie Jensen; eight grandchildren and four
  A memorial observance will be held for him at the Center for Korean
Studies at the University of Hawai'i on Monday, September 15, at 3:00 p.m.
Contributions may be made to the Drug Policy Forum of Hawaii, P.O. Box
61233, Honolulu, HI 96839, or to a charity of one's choice in his memory.
Condolences may be directed to "The Topping Family" at 2514 Oahu Avenue,
Honolulu, HI 96822. BWB

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