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Notable Deaths 2011

December 31, 2011 by staff 

Notable Deaths 2011Notable Deaths 2011, An airman who was slain while preparing to go to Afghanistan and an Anderson University basketball player who died training for the coming season were among those whose deaths made news in the area in 2011.

A former county administrator, a former county auditor, Clemson University’s top attorney, a former Iva mayor, a well-known philanthropist, a man known for playing Santa Claus and a 112-year-old retired housekeeper also died during the year.

Thousands of people waving American flags and holding patriotic signs lined streets in Anderson on the day of Nick Alden’s funeral. The 2003 Palmetto High School graduate was one of two U.S. airmen who were gunned down March 2 outside an airport terminal in Frankfurt, Germany.

Alden, 25, had been in Germany training for a deployment to Afghanistan. He left behind a wife and two small children.

A German court is expected to deliver a verdict next month in the case of Alden’s accused killer, Arid Uka. The 21-year-old Kosovo Albanian has confessed to the attack.

Uka, described by prosecutors as a radical Muslim who acted alone, faces a possible life sentence.

A wheelchair and 97 years on her 5-foot-tall frame did not keep Marie Thomason Bowie away from the season opener at the Parker Bowie Athletic Complex’s little league baseball fields last spring.

She was there to throw the first pitch on the 35-acre complex that she donated to Iva and the Anderson County community.

Bowie taught home economics in Anderson School District 3 for 45 years. About 10 years ago – long after she retired from the classroom – she established a foundation to take care of the 800-acre farm owned by her and her late husband, W. Parker Bowie.

On April 21, Bowie died at age 98.

Over the years, Bowie and her husband made sizeable contributions to Erskine College and to Southern Wesleyan University. Their gifts to Erskine included the Bowie Divinity Hall in 1985 and the Bowie Arts Center in 1995.

Bowie was recognized for her philanthropic efforts with an honorary doctorate from Erskine College and the Wil Lou Gray Outstanding Educator award. She was a two-time recipient of the Order of the Palmetto. In 2008, she received a Pointing the Way award from the Independent Mail for her leadership in the community.

Anderson University basketball player Lamar Jack died Oct. 4, four days after he collapsed on campus in a preseason workout. He was 19.

Preliminary medical assessments indicate that Jack died of a blood clot and a blockage in his lung. His death was a factor in local and state efforts to ban a synthetic but legal substance that he was thought to have ingested.

Before committing to Anderson University, Jack attended Woodmont High School in Piedmont, and became one of the basketball team’s stars. Jack was a three-year varsity letter winner at Woodmont. There, he averaged eight points and 16 rebounds per game and earned all-region honors in 2009 and 2010. As a senior, Jack was one of 12 players from the Upstate to be chosen for the North-South all-star game.

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