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He is remembered as a loyal friend and dedicated educator

Howard Marblestone taught the classics at Lafayette for 34 years. Though, his students and other faculty members alike learned much more than just Latin and Greek from Marblestone, they learned about friendship and the importance of being a kind person.

“When it came to friends, Howard was considered the most loyal. He was never too busy to make time for conversation, or offer help of any sort,” Robert Cohn, Berman Professor of Jewish Studies, said of Marblestone.

Cohn joined hundreds of students, faculty, staff, alumni, family, and friends at a service today in Colton Chapel to remember and celebrate Marblestone’s life. The Charles Elliott Professor of Foreign Languages and Literatures, Marblestone died Jan. 29 after a very brief illness.

Numerous professors and students, both past and present, shared their memories of Marblestone.

Eric Ziolkowski, Dana Professor and head of religious studies, discussed Marblestone’s dedication to teaching and scholarship.

“Most of us consider ourselves members of departments,” said Ziolkowski. “Howard was a department; he was classics at Lafayette. He was invaluable and irreplaceable to this institution and gave substance to the humanistic values that it upholds. Lafayette will always be a brighter, richer place for being able to claim Howard as its own.”

Anthropology and sociology major Doug Appel ’08 reflected on how Marblestone had affected his academic and personal life.

“Professor Marblestone was a man whose individual engagements in life always seemed to be drawn together from the same passionate energy,” Appel said. “He was always interweaving intimate characters and stories from his family life with his academics in a way that was truly disarming. Instead of the academic displacement that one might expect from a person who had been teaching for so many years, his teaching was always vibrantly illustrated as someone whose passion for the classics only grew with the number of years. I will always remember him as an incredible teacher, scholar, and most of all, a friend.”

The main theme of the service is the legacy that Marblestone left behind. In honor of his legacy, the department of foreign languages and literatures is establishing the Howard J. Marblestone fund for a lecture series on Greek and Latin scholarship.

“You could not help but be moved by his joy for language and the classics and the relevance they hold for us today. He strengthened us and continues to strengthen us through his narrative and his shaping of our professional and personal lives,” said Abby Stamelman Hocky ’78.

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