The University of Houston’s annual Day of Remembrance took place March 10 in the University Chapel. Each year a simple ceremony, open to the entire community, honors the students, faculty, staff and members of the community who passed away in the prior calendar year. A listing of the students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends who passed away last year is available on the A.D. Bruce Religion Center’s website, uh.edu/adbruce. For more information about the UH Day of Remembrance, please contact Bruce Twenhafel, manager of the A.D. Bruce Religion Center, at 713-743-5050 or brucet@uh.edu.

The Bruce Religion Center was opened in the fall of 1964 and dedicated in May 1965. It celebrates its 50th Anniversary in 2015. The University of Houston community joins in remembrance of those alumni and family members who have died recently.


  • Alma Jean “A. J.” Yeoman was the beloved wife of 64 years of UH Coach Bill Yeoman. A. J. and Coach Yeoman were a dedicated team for every activity in which they were involved. The University of Houston football program and generations of student athletes loved the Yeoman team. In 2006, the UH Alumni Association awarded A. J. with the UHAA Chair’s Distinguished Award. A. J. Yeoman left us on Jan. 3, 2015.

  • Robert Edward (Bob) Sheriff, who enjoyed a “first” career with Chevron and upon retirement in 1975, embarked upon a “second” career by joining the faculty at the University of Houston as a fully tenured professor of geophysics. In 2003, Bob retired as Professor Emeritus from the University of Houston, but maintained an office at UH for many years to stay involved with the geoscience department and attend Friday seminars each week.

    Bob and his wife, Margaret, believed strongly in the value of education and endowed several scholarships for international students wishing to continue their studies in geophysics at UH. They established the endowed Faculty Chair in Applied Seismology, an endowment in Applied Geophysics, an endowed Professorship in Sequence Stratigraphy and an endowed Professorship in Geophysics at the College of Natural Sciences and Mathematics. Bob died Nov. 19, 2014.

  • Leonard Rauch attended UH in the late ’40s.  He spent most of his life in real estate development, education and banking. In 1969, he was appointed to the Board of Regents of the UH System. Leonard was the system’s longest-serving regent, including serving two terms as chairman. In 1995, Governor George W. Bush appointed Leonard to be chairman of the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board, which oversees higher education in Texas.  Leonard was chairman of the Board of the University of Houston Foundation from 1995 until his death.

    Leonard received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters from the University of Houston in 2007. He also received the University of Houston Distinguished Alumnus Award (1980) and the Distinguished Alumnus of UH College of Social Sciences Award (1990). He received the North Houston Chamber of Commerce Pacesetter Award for Business (1991), the New Mexico Military Institute Alumni Hall of Fame Distinguished Alumnus Award (1986) and the Exchange Club Book of Golden Deeds Award (1977). Leonard died Jan. 6, 2015.

  • Sam Preston Douglass earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree, with majors in management and finance at the University of Houston. He was president of the graduating class of 1954 and of the Cavaliers (Sigma Nu fraternity). Sam was also a Cougar cheerleader in 1952, 1953 and 1954. 

    Active in the Houston community, Sam served many years on the boards of the University of Houston Law Center and the C. T. Bauer College of Business. The Sam P. Douglass Library was installed in the University of Houston Alumni Center. He received many awards during his lifetime but was most proud to be the recipient of the Distinguished Alumni award from the College of Business and the 1989 Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of Houston Alumni Organization. Sam died Nov. 27, 2014.

  • Sherry Lewis, daughter of Guy V. and Dena Lewis, was a familiar supporter of all UH Athletics programs through the years, but especially the men’s basketball team, which her father led as head coach during a Hall of Fame career from 1956 to 1986.

    She studied fine arts/photography at the University of Houston. Lewis’ loyalty to UH teams and student athletes remained strong throughout the decades. You could always find Sherry cheering on the Cougars inside Hofheinz Pavilion during men’s basketball season. Sherry died Dec. 29, 2014.

  • Jack Everett Stalsby graduated from UH in 1949 with a business administration degree and major in economics. On campus, Stalsby was a founding member of The Cavaliers Fraternity, a forerunner for Sigma Nu Fraternity.

    At the age of 80, Jack founded The Jack E. & Greta W. Stalsby Foundation with the intent of “paying back” and providing others an opportunity to grow and succeed in life through education. Jack enjoyed meeting the many “Stalsby Scholars” and hearing their stories. He truly loved the University of Houston and stayed very connected from athletic to alumni events.  Stalsby was a Life Member of the Houston Alumni Association. He died Oct. 15, 2014.