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Dr. Elmer Harp, who received an honorary doctorate from Memorial University in 2004, died June 2, 2009, in N.H.. Dr. Harp was a pioneer of Newfoundland and Labrador archaeology, conducting site survey and excavation in the Strait of Belle Isle region in 1949-50 and 1961-1963. Following this, he conducted archaeological research throughout the Arctic. Dr. Harp was a highly respected scholar, a gifted photographer and an enduring friend to Newfoundland and Labrador.

Violetta (Letty) Maloney Halpert passed away on May 30. Wife of the late Herbert Halpert, an eminent folklorist, the pair moved to Newfoundland in the 1960s to develop the folklore studies program at Memorial. While her husband took on the role as head of the newly created Folklore department in 1968, Mrs. Halpert lectured and taught before turning her attention to areas outside of the classroom. As head of the acquisitions department, and later collections specialist, at Memorial University’s library, Mrs. Halpert turned that vast knowledge towards building an outstanding folklore collection and was largely responsible for developing the library’s holdings in several areas that today are considered Memorial’s strengths: folklore, American literature, linguistics, anthropology and Irish studies.

Romeo LeBlanc, the first Acadian to be appointed governor general of Canada and a central figure in the Liberal party for more than two decades, died June 24 after a lengthy illness. He was 81. A former federal fisheries minister, Dr. LeBlanc received an honorary doctor of laws from Memorial in May 1997.

Dr. Harry Edstrom, a professor in the Faculty of Medicine, died July 7. He was 67. Dr. Edstrom was clinical chief of medicine at Eastern Health; past-president of the Newfoundland and Labrador Medical Association; past governor of the American College of Physicians; served on the executive of the Canadian Medical Association and was a recipient of the 2002 Queen’s Jubilee Medal.