July 1, 2008

Richard Dickinson, a longtime ethics professor at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis who was the school’s president from 1986 to 1997, died May 24 at age 78 of an acute aortic rupture while visiting a son in Michigan. A United Church of Christ minister, Dickinson directed a project in the early 1970s to fight racism in Indianapolis churches. He was the first non-Disciple to serve as president of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) seminary. He had been academic dean the previous 12 years.

Richard T. Sutcliffe, 90, the creator of the Davey and Goliath animated television series, died May 11 at a Dallas hospital from complications after suffering a stroke, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America announced. Sutcliffe developed the idea that led to the popular series that aired from 1961 to 1976 and is now a property of the ELCA. As executive producer, he hired the staffers who were responsible for the show’s stop-motion animation production. The series was about a boy named Davey Hansen and his talking dog, Goliath. Earlier, Sutcliffe was an assistant editor of the Lutheran, the magazine of the former United Lutheran Church in America. In 1962, when the United Lutheran Church and three other Lutheran church bodies merged to become the Lutheran Church in America, he became associate director of the church’s Commission on Press, Radio and Television. He later headed university relations at Southern Methodist University.

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